nep-tra New Economics Papers
on Transition Economics
Issue of 2018‒08‒13
eleven papers chosen by
J. David Brown
United States Census Bureau

  1. Rural waste disposal issues within urban borders By Mihai, Florin-Constantin; Iatu, Corneliu; Grozavu, Adrian
  2. Persistent and transient inefficiency: Explaining the low efficiency of Chinese big banks By Fungáčová, Zuzana; Klein, Paul-Olivier; Weill, Laurent
  3. Returns to higher education subjects and tiers in China - Evidence from the China Family Panel Studies By Kang, Lili; Peng, Fei; Zhu, Yu
  4. Projecting future demand for informal care among older people in China: the road towards a sustainable long-term care system By Hu, Bo
  5. Temperature and High-Stakes Cognitive Performance: Evidence from the National College Entrance Examination in China By Joshua S. Graff Zivin; Yingquan Song; Qu Tang; Peng Zhang
  6. Transparency and Market Discipline: Evidence from the Russian Interbank Market By Francois Guillemin; Maria Semenova
  7. At the roots of China's striking performance in textile exports: a comparison with its main Asian competitors By D. Baiardi; C. Bianchi
  8. Bigger Than You Thought: China's Contribution to Scientific Publications By Qingnan Xie; Richard B. Freeman
  9. The closer the better: does better access to outpatient care prevent hospitalization? By Peter Elek; Tamas Molnar; Balazs Varadi
  10. Primary care availability affects antibiotic consumption – Evidence using unfilled positions in Hungary By Aniko Biro; Peter Elek
  11. Generations and protest in Eastern Germany: Between revolution and apathy By Joly, Philippe

  1. By: Mihai, Florin-Constantin; Iatu, Corneliu; Grozavu, Adrian
    Abstract: The paper examines the waste management issues in the villages annexed to administrative-territorial units of the Romanian cities which have been frequently neglected by urban waste operators. The lack of waste collection services in such peri-urban communities favored the illegal waste disposal practices particularly prior to EU accession. The extension of waste collection services from main cities to such areas is compulsory in order to mitigate the environmental risks and the public health threats. The paper estimates the amounts of household waste susceptible to be uncontrolled disposed of by peri-urban villages in different geographical areas of North-East region with a particular focus on Neamt county. The paper points out that these rural settlements should receive the same attention concerning the municipal waste management services as the main urban areas. Traditional recovery of waste fractions at the household level (e.g., home composting) should be further promoted in such areas in order to avoid illegal dumping issue and to prevent the landfill of biodegradable waste as requested by EU regulations.
    Keywords: waste management, illegal waste dumping, peri-urban areas, pollution
    JEL: H76 Q53 Q56 R11 R52 R58
    Date: 2018–07–02
  2. By: Fungáčová, Zuzana; Klein, Paul-Olivier; Weill, Laurent
    Abstract: Considering the evidence that China’s five largest state-owned banks (the Big Five) suffer from low cost efficiency, this paper decomposes overall efficiency of Chinese banks into: persistent efficiency and transient efficiency components. Low persistent efficiency reflects structural problems, while low transient efficiency is associated with short-term problems. Using the model of Kumbhakar, Lien and Hardaker (2014) based on the stochastic frontier approach, we measure persistent efficiency and transient efficiency for a large sample of 166 Chinese banks over the period 2008–2015. In line with existing evidence, we find a lower average cost efficiency of Big Five banks compared to other Chinese banks. It is almost entirely due to low persistent cost efficiency. Big Five transient efficiency is similar to other Chinese banks. Our findings support the view that major structural reforms are needed to enhance the efficiency of China’s Big Five banks.
    JEL: C23 D24 G21
    Date: 2018–07–20
  3. By: Kang, Lili; Peng, Fei; Zhu, Yu
    Abstract: Using the recent China Family Panel Studies, we are able to identify the subjects studied of both college (2-3 years) graduates and university (4-5 years) graduates. For the latter group, we can further distinguish universities by the tier of selectivity (i.e. Key and Ordinary Universities). We take advantage of the rich information on the respondent’s school cohort and hukou status at age 12 and the mother’s age and education to estimate the simultaneous choice of subject and tier of prestige of higher education institutions (HEI) faced by university applicants. Using the doubly robust Inverse Probability Weighted Regression Adjustment (IPWRA) method to account for selection (on observables) into subjects and tiers, our treatment effect estimates suggest that OLS substantially underestimate the effect of attending more prestigious universities, for graduates of both genders in Law, Economics and Management (LEM). We also show that the recent massive expansion of the higher education sector have reduced returns to HE for all graduates, except for those studying LEM or Other non-STEM subjects at the most prestigious universities. Our results are robust to treating subjects as predetermined for the selection into HEIs by tiers of prestige.
    Keywords: Returns to university tier and subjects,China,Inverse Probability Weighted Regression Adjustment,Higher Education expansion
    JEL: I23
    Date: 2018
  4. By: Hu, Bo
    Abstract: The long-term care system in China relies heavily on informal care provided by family members. This study makes projections on the demand for informal care among Chinese older people between 2015 and 2035 and quantifies the level of long-term care resources needed to meet their needs. The data come from longitudinal information in a nationally representative sample, China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Survey 2011 and 2013. The macrosimulation approach (PSSRU model) and the Markov approach are integrated into one Bayesian modelling framework. The Monte Carlo simulation technique is used to capture parameter uncertainty. We project that the demand for informal care will increase from 41.3 million people (95% CI: 39.9–42.7) in 2015 to 82.6 million people (95% CI: 78.3–86.9) in 2035. The long-term care system faces unbalanced pressure of demand for informal care from different groups of older people. The projected demand is sensitive to changes in older people’s disability trajectory and the availability of formal care provided by the government, but less sensitive to an increase in singleton households in the future. We discuss possible policy measures to alleviate the mounting pressure on the demand for informal care.
    Keywords: Long-term care projections; Disability transitions; Population ageing; China; Macrosimulation; Markov modelling; Bayesian approach
    JEL: J1
    Date: 2018–06–19
  5. By: Joshua S. Graff Zivin; Yingquan Song; Qu Tang; Peng Zhang
    Abstract: We provide the first nation-wide estimates on temperature effects on high-stakes cognitive performance in a developing country using data from the National College Entrance Examination (NCEE) in China. The NCEE is one of the most important institutions in China and affects hundreds of millions of families. We find that a one-standard-deviation increase in temperature (3.29° C) decreases the total test score by 1.12% (9.62% of a standard deviation) and decreases the probability of getting into first-tier universities by 1.97% (4.38% of a standard deviation). This suggests that temperature plays an important role in high-stakes cognitive performance and has potentially far-reaching impacts for the careers and lifetime earnings of students.
    JEL: I23 I24 Q54
    Date: 2018–07
  6. By: Francois Guillemin (National Research University Higher School of Economics); Maria Semenova (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the role of bank voluntary disclosure, as a source of information about risk, in the interbank market. Using data on the 179 largest Russian banks over the period of 2004-2013 we test whether the ability to attract interbank loans is sensitive to various transparency indices such as those disclosing bank risks, board composition, or even corporate event details. We show that larger but riskier banks – at least in terms of credit risk – behave more transparently and disclose more. The article is also the first to provide evidence that the ability to attract funds in the interbank market is positively correlated with the degree of transparency. This result is stable for various aspects of disclosure.
    Keywords: banks, interbank market, disclosure, transparency, banking governance
    JEL: G21 P2
    Date: 2018
  7. By: D. Baiardi; C. Bianchi
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the determinants of China's striking performance in textile exports in the time period 2001-2016. We integrate the analysis by Lall and Albaladejo (World Development, 2004), based only on China and its main Asian competitors' market share dynamics, by estimating an extended version of a traditional export function, derived from the imperfect substitute model, including a proxy of non-price competitiveness. The key long-run elasticities for each Asian exporter are thus computed and discussed in a panel-data framework, and the different export performances are examined taking into account the interaction between the estimated parameters and the growth rates of relative prices, world income and product quality. Lastly, we decompose the textile export growth differences between China and its rivals into the three main channels of trade competition, i.e. price, quantity and quality. Our findings show that China is crowding out most of its rivals with a competitive strategy based on a mix of low and decreasing relative prices and non-price policies aiming at stimulating export volumes. However, certain weaknesses in the Chinese trade prospects emerge when quality improvement is considered.
    Keywords: Textile exports, Outperformance, Displacement, Competitiveness, Cross-country comparisons, Panel data analysis
    JEL: C23 F14 L67
    Date: 2018
  8. By: Qingnan Xie; Richard B. Freeman
    Abstract: From 2000 to 2016 China increased its scientific publications in the international journals indexed by Scopus to become the largest contributor to global science, accounting for about 23% of journal articles adjusted for the Chinese share of addresses or names on publications. Publications with all-China addresses contributed the most to the increase, followed by cross-country collaborations and papers by Chinese-named researchers outside the country. The same period also saw a huge increase in scientific publications in Chinese language journals not indexed in Scopus. We estimate that while Chinese language papers gain about 1/5th as many citations as non-Chinese (largely English) papers in Scopus they are so numerous that even valued as making 1/5th the contribution of a Scopus paper, China accounts for 36% of global scientific papers defined as Scopus papers and China language equivalent papers and for 37% of citations to those papers. China's move to the forefront of scientific inquiry makes it a key driver of the direction of scientific and technological progress and of the knowledge-based economies of the foreseeable future.
    JEL: F0 O0 O3 O31 O33 O34
    Date: 2018–07
  9. By: Peter Elek (Department of Economics, Eörvös Loránd University (ELTE), Budapest, Hungary); Tamas Molnar (Budapest Institute for Policy Analysis, Budapest, Hungary); Balazs Varadi (Budapest Institute for Policy Analysis, Budapest, Hungary Department of Economics, ELTE)
    Abstract: In 2010-2012 new outpatient service locations were established in poor Hungarian microregions. We exploit this quasi-experiment to estimate the extent of substitution between outpatient and inpatient care. Fixed-effects Poisson models on individual-level panel data for years 2008-2015 show that the number of outpatient visits increased by 19% and the number of inpatient stays decreased by 1.6% as a result, driven by a marked reduction of potentially avoidable hospitalization (PAH) (5%). In our dynamic specification, PAH effects occur in the year after the treatment, whereas non-PAH only decreases with a multi-year lag. The instrumental variable estimates suggest that a one euro increase in outpatient care expenditures produces a 0.6 euro decrease in inpatient care expenditures. Our results (1) strengthen the claim that bringing outpatient care closer to a previously underserved population yields considerable health benefits, and (2) suggest that there is a strong substitution element between outpatient and inpatient care.
    Keywords: Administrative panel data, Inpatient care, Outpatient care, Potentially avoidable hospitalization, Quasi-experiment, Substitution effect
    JEL: C23 C26 I10
    Date: 2018–04
  10. By: Aniko Biro (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences); Peter Elek (Department of Economics, Eörvös Loránd University (ELTE), Budapest, Hungary)
    Abstract: Using administrative data from Hungary, we analyse the effect of general practitioner (GP) care availability on the consumption of antibiotics. We exploit the geographical and time variation in unfilled GP positions as a source of exogenous variation in the availability of primary care. According to our estimates from fixed effects panel regressions, if the single GP position of a village becomes unfilled, the days of therapy (DOT) as well as public expenditures on antibiotics decrease by 3.2-4.1%. The negative effect on antibiotic consumption is stronger in smaller settlements, in settlements where secondary care is less available, and where antibiotics were previously overprescribed. The quality of prescribing behaviour measured by the ratio of narrow-spectrum to broad-spectrum antibiotics deteriorates significantly as a consequence of worse primary care availability. The number of GP consultations decreases by 9.8%, but prescribed antibiotic DOT per GP visit goes up by 7.2%.
    Keywords: Administrative panel data, Antibiotics, Primary care availability, Quality of antibiotic prescription, Unfilled general practices
    JEL: C23 I10 I11
    Date: 2018–06
  11. By: Joly, Philippe
    Abstract: How is the protest behavior of citizens in new democracies influenced by their experience of the past? Certain theories of political socialization hold that cohorts reaching political maturity under dictatorship are subject to apathy. Yet, it remains unclear whether mobilization during the transition can counterbalance this effect. This article examines the protest behavior of citizens socialized in Eastern Germany, a region marked by two legacies: a legacy of autocracy and, following the 1989-90 revolution, a legacy of transitional mobilization. Using age-periodcohort models with data from the European Social Survey, the analysis assesses the evolution of gaps in protest across generations and time between East and West Germans. The results demonstrate that participation in demonstrations, petitions, and boycotts is lower for East Germans socialized under communism in comparison with West Germans from the same cohorts. This participation deficit remains stable over time and even increases for certain protest activities.
    Date: 2018

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