Economy and Finance
The global economy is rapidly changing. Economic power is increasingly shifting from North America and Europe to China, India, Brazil and other emerging economies. At the same time, poverty remains endemic in many parts of the developing world. Global challenges such as climate change and resource scarcity are shaping the way countries manage their own economies and interact with others.
The impacts of the financial crisis are being felt around the world, placing global financial systems under increased scrutiny and raising questions about regulation and reform.
Sustainable and equitable economic growth is more important than ever. Achieving this requires countries to reach out to broader markets through trade, and to create the right domestic environment to stimulate investment and innovation. They also need to ensure that external relationships contribute as much as possible to domestic growth and development, and that the benefits of development are shared fairly.
IDS works on a range of issues concerning economy and finance, including:
- Trade and growth – we are analysing trends in global trade and regionalisation of the global economy using quantitative analysis and economic modelling.
- Sustainability and the green economy – we are seeking to understand how investment in low-carbon technologies can help countries grow sustainably, and how this investment could be increased.
- Finance and infrastructure – we are examining the impact of Development Finance Institutions support for Private Participation in Infrastructure on economic growth and poverty reduction.
- Private capital flows – we are mapping changes in capital flows, and linking this to development impacts.
- Climate change finance – we are exploring how to mobilise and distribute finance that helps countries mitigate and adapt to climate change.
- Environmental taxation – we are exploring the links between environmental taxation and international development outcomes.
- Business innovation and branding – we are examining how businesses in China and Brazil are growing their innovation and branding capabilities.
- Research Fellow
- Research Fellow
- Honorary Associate
- Research Fellow
- Professorial Fellow
- Research Fellow, Cluster Leader
Assessing the Tobin Tax
The current financial crisis has stirred up an old debate about whether it might make sense to impose a Tobin Tax, either on foreign exchange transactions or on all financial transactions. More details
BRICS Economic Engagement Footprint Study
This project investigated the nature of economic relations between the BRICS and Africa, in order to quantify the development footprint, focusing on various elements such as trade, investment. finance, ODA and migration. The current phase aims to look at development finance and the role of BRICS development banks. More details
Business from the BRICS
The Rising Powers in International Development Programme is looking at the growing role of business from the BRICS countries in the field of international development cooperation. More details
Codes and Standards and Development Finance
Using case studies of Brazil and India, this work looked at the impact on development finance of compliance with international codes and standards. More details
Evidence and Lessons from Latin America (ELLA)
Evidence and Lessons from Latin America' (ELLA) is a knowledge sharing and learning programme, that seeks to improve knowledge of Latin America's development among African and Asian policymakers, practitioners and researchers - on selected economic, environmental and governance issues. More details
Handbook of Financialization
Financialization has become the go-to term for scholarship that studies the vastly expanded role of finance in contemporary politics, economy and society. The goal of this handbook is to provide a comprehensive overview of the scholarship on financialization as it stands today, almost twenty years after the concept was first embraced by social scientists More details
International Architecture for Economic Shock Financing
This project examined the international architecture of economic shock financing and provided some recommendations for a better shock financing architecture. More details
Linking Participation and Economic Advancement
In this project, IDS will draw upon and expand its rich experience at the forefront of thinking about participation in development, and our emerging work at the intersection of participation and markets. We will co-create along with the Economic Advancement Program (EAP) at the Open Society Foundations (OSF), a deeper understanding of participation in economic advancement in general, as well as how EAP can bring participatory approaches into its own practice. More details
Political Economy of Low Carbon Investment in China and India
This project investigates whether and how coalitions of public, private and civic actors influence low carbon investment. More details
Research on the Poverty Impact of Market and Enabling Business Environment Programmes in Kenya
To what extent does private sector development work in Kenya contribute to a reduction in poverty and inequality? This review aims to assess the evidence base for DFID Kenya’s Wealth Creation Pillar programming. More details
UNU-WIDER Symposium on Taxation & Revenue Mobilisation in Developing Countries consultancy
Bruno Martorano will be conducting research on the topic of ‘Tax Changes and Inequality in Latin America, 1990-2010’ More details
Negotiating Exclusions in Developing Country FTAsForeign Trade Review 49.4 (2014)
There exists a choice of negotiating the exclusions in tariff liberalisation: negative or positive listing. The extent of coverage caters to all sectors/products minus an identified ‘sensitive list’ under the negative list approach is considered more liberalising than positive listing with coverage across a specific number of sectors/products selected for preferential treatment. More details
Strengthening Evidence-Based Policy: Outputs November 2012 – March 2014Accountable Grant Outputs Brochure (2014)
Knowledge and evidence are important elements of all policy processes. While the availability of more or higher quality evidence does not guarantee better policy processes, it is difficult to imagine how development policy and outcomes can be improved without it. More details
Banking on a New World OrderThe Economic Times of India (2014)
The establishment of a BRICS bank may see a geopolitical shift from developed countries to developing ones. More details
Understanding South Africa’s Role in Achieving Regional and Global Development ProgressIDS Policy Briefing 64 (2014)
As Africa’s most diversified, developed and (until recently) largest economy, South Africa occupies a unique position in the international development debate. It is an active player in global governance and development fora, maintains an extensive development partnership with its region, and is a member of the BRICS Forum of emerging powers (along with Brazil, Russia, India and China). More details
Rendite machen und Gutes tun? Mikrokredite und die Folgen neoliberaler Entwicklungspolitik
The first book to collect critical perspectives on microfinance in the German language, this volume brings together researchers, practitioners and journalists for an encompassing assessment of the spread of microfinance and its broader consequences. More details
An Economics of Wellbeing: What Would Economics Look Like if it were Focused on Human Wellbeing?IDS Working Paper 436 (2014)
This paper makes a number of fundamental proposals to reconsider economics by putting human wellbeing at the centre. More details
The Shadow Economy in Conflict-Affected Countries
Targeting the shadow economy in conflict-affected contexts is a complex task about which little is known (expert comment). This rapid literature review uncovered little focusing on interventions aimed at incentivising war profiteers to join the legal economy and even less on leveraging the positive social function that shadow economies can provide to conflict-affected populations. More details
How Does Financial Regulation in Low-Income Countries Affect Growth and Financial Stability?
Without effective regulation, financial systems can become unstable, triggering crises that can devastate the real economy. However, there is another side to regulation. The primary purpose of finance is to facilitate productive economic activity. The avoidance of crises creates the foundation for this, but does not guarantee it is done well: financial regulation has a profound effect on the ability of the financial system to perform this function. More details
Sustaining Growth and Structural Transformation in Africa: How Can a Stable and Efficient Financial Sector Help?
This paper draws together a number of essays that emerged from a public debate in Ghana on ‘What does it take to build a stable and efficient financial sector for sustaining growth and structural transformation in Africa?’ More details
Development Finance Institutions and Infrastructure: Findings from a Systematic Review of Evidence for Development AdditionalityGREAT Insights 2.4 (2013)
By leveraging private investment, Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) aim to reduce the infrastructure financing gap in the developing world. This article summarises the findings of a Systematic Review of the evidence on the development impact of DFI support for private participation in infrastructure. More details
What is Business and Development? An Annotated BibliographyIDS Evidence Report 4 (2013)
This annotated bibliography provides an exhaustive collection of resources on the topic of Business and Development. More details
Mobilising Investment for Inclusive Green Growth in Low-Income Countries
Low income countries (LICs) require very large investments if they are to move to a trajectory of inclusive green growth. The most important sector for inclusive green growth is energy, both in terms of increasing generation from renewable sources, and improving the efficiency with which energy is used. This paper explores how additional private investment can be attracted into the energy sectors of LICs in both these areas at the scale and in the form needed. More details
Context Matters a Causal Chain Approach to Unpacking Social Accountability Interventions
A common premise of development interventions is that context matters for development outcomes, yet there is little understanding of how exactly 'context' affects outcomes and which contextual factors matter most. More details
What Next for the BRICS Bank?IDS Rapid Response Briefing 3 (2013)
A new development bank to be created by the 'Rising Powers' of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) is intended to promote greater cooperation between developing countries, and address what is seen by many as a history of misguidance and underinvestment by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). More details
Evidence on the Impact of Tariff Reductions on Employment in Developing Countries: A Systematic ReviewJournal of Economic Surveys (2013)
This paper analyses the evidence on the impact of tariff reductions on employment in developing countries. We carry out a systematic review of the existing empirical literature, and include both, ex post econometric evidence and ex ante Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) simulation studies. The synthesis of results suggests that the effects of tariff reductions on employment are country and trade policy specific. More details
Impact of Displacement on Women and Female-Headed Households: A Mixed Method Analysis with a Microeconomic TouchJournal of Refugee Studies 26.1 (2013)
This article analyses forced displacement through a gender lens, focusing on the experiences of women and also of female headed households. It uses a set of qualitative as well as quantitative data, covering internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Sampur, Sri Lanka. More details
Rise and Fall of Indian Microfinance: The Andhra Pradesh Crisis in PerspectiveStrategic Change 22.1-2 (2013)
The crisis of microfinance which erupted in 2010 in Andhra Pradesh has complex causes rooted in Indian history. More details
The Changing Politics of Tax Policy Reform in Developing CountriesPREM Notes Special Series on Governance and Public Sector Management 2 (2013)
Who shapes tax policy reform in developing countries? A wider range of political actors are beginning to exercise influence. A brief history will explain who they are and how they operate. More details
Does Better Provincial Governance Boost Private Investment in Vietnam?IDS Working Paper 414 (2013)
A large literature asserts a causal relationship between the quality of economic governance and economic performance. However, attempts to establish such a link at an aggregate level have met with considerable methodological criticism. More details
Late twentieth-century globalisation: the evolution and differentiation of states and forms of public authority.
This text book provides up-to-date summaries of the debates and approaches that are currently at the forefront of both European and American Global Political Economy (GPE). More details
Unlocking the trade and growth potential of Africa’s services sector22 Sep 2015
By Sarah King, Taffere Tesfachew
From Monterrey to Addis: the return of development banks23 Jul 2015
By Stephen Spratt
Is it possible to adjust with a human face? Lessons from Iceland21 Jul 2015
By Bruno Martorano
Financing sustainable development: resources already in the South13 Jul 2015
By Yves Guicquéro
New finance minister signals Tsipras’ willingness to reach compromise07 Jul 2015
By Stephany Griffith-Jones
Austerity and democracy in Greece03 Jul 2015
By Richard Jolly
The positive role of good development banks20 May 2015
By Stephany Griffith-Jones
Greece, new hope or new risks for Europe?17 Mar 2015
By Maria del Mar Maestre Morales, Henry Tugendhat
Greening China: tackling bad industrial policies should be a priority16 Mar 2015
By Hao Tan
Re-thinking growth: direction, distribution, diversity26 Jan 2015
By Melissa Leach