Oxford University Press's
Academic Insights for the Thinking World

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All (European) politics is national

By Jean Pisani-Ferry
At the end of May, 400 million EU citizens will be called to participate in the second-largest direct election in the world (the first being held in India). Since they last went to the polls to elect their parliament, in 2009, Europe has gone through an acute crisis that precipitated several countries deeper into recession than any peacetime shock they had suffered for a century.

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Can we end poverty?

Define poverty as living with two dollars a day or less. Now imagine that governments could put those two dollars and one cent in every poor person’s pocket with little effort and minimal waste. Poverty is finished. Of course, things are more complicated than that. But you get a sense of where modern social policy is going—and what will soon be possible.

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The financial consequences of terrorism

By Andrew Staniforth
Within moments of the terrorist attacks in London on the morning of 7 July 2005, news of the unfolding crisis on public transport had reached traders in the City. The London Stock Exchange index, the FTSE 100, lost 3.5 per cent of its total value within just 90 minutes of the trading session that day as a direct result of the bombings – equivalent to a total de-capitalisation of around £44,000,000,000.

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Sam sells

By Adam Grossman
It is rare for a seventh round National Football League (NFL) draft pick to be at the center of the sports world. Then again, Michael Sam is not an average draft pick. Sam is trying to become the first openly gay player to compete for a NFL team.

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Development theories and economic miracles

By Vladimir Popov
Development thinking in the second half of the twentieth century can hardly be credited for “manufacturing” development success stories. It is difficult, if not impossible, to claim that either the early structuralist models of the Big Push (financing gap and basic needs of the 1950-70s), or neo-liberal ideas of Washington consensus (that dominated the field since the 1980s) have provided crucial inputs to economic miracles in East Asia or elsewhere.

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A conversation on economic democracy with Tom Malleson

How do we address the problem of inequality in capitalist societies? Tom Malleson, the author of After Occupy: Economic Democracy for the 21st Century, argues that by making sure that democracy exists in both our economy and in our government, we may be able to achieve meaningful equality throughout society.

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Can we finally stop worrying about Europe?

By Richard S. Grossman
Because Europe accounts for nearly a quarter of the world’s economic output, this question is important not only to Europeans, but to Africans, Asians, Americans (both North and South), and Australians as well. Those who forecast that the United States’s relatively anemic five-year-old recovery is poised to become stronger almost always include the caveat “unless, of course, Europe implodes.”

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The Oracle of Omaha warns about public pension underfunding

By Edward Zelinsky
As the American public debated the legislation ultimately enacted into law as the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, no person was more influential than the Oracle of Omaha, Warren Buffett. Much attention was given to billionaire Buffett’s complaint that his federal income tax bracket was lower than his secretary’s tax rate. President Obama invoked “the Buffett Rule” to bolster the President’s successful effort for the Act to raise income tax brackets for high income taxpayers.

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Is the planet full?

Is the planet full? Can the world continue to support a growing population estimated to reach 10 billion people by the middle of the century? And how can we harness the benefits of a healthier, wealthier and longer-living population?

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Banning Sterling makes a lot of cents for the NBA

By Adam Grossman
Donald Sterling’s lifetime National Basketball Association (NBA) ban, $2.5 million dollar fine, and potentially forced sale of the Clippers may seem fit in the category of previous owners who received a comparable punishment. Marge Schott was forced to sell the Cincinnati Reds for her anti-Semitic and racist comment while owner of the team.

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Why everyone does better when employees have a say in the workplace

By William Lazonick and Tony Huzzard
In manufacturing plants all over the world, both managers and workers have discovered that when employees are involved in workplace decision-making, productivity rises. So in the United States, it made national news when on 14 February 2014 workers at the Volkswagen auto plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee rejected representation by the United Automobile Workers by a vote 712 to 626.

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Searching for more legal certainty in bitcoins and mobile payments

By Niels Vandezande
In the last few months, international media have reported extensively on the latest developments in the online economy. These reports have focused mostly on the rise of so-called cryptocurrencies, with bitcoin being the most well-known example. Such cryptocurrencies are characterized by their decentralized nature, meaning that they aren’t controlled by a central government.

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Why are money market funds safer than the Bitcoin?

Few realise that Brazil was the birthplace of the money market fund. Since their inception money market funds have grown and spread globally. However, they have often eluded a firm definition. In this series of podcasts Viktoria Baklanova, Chief Credit Officer of Acacia Capital (New York), describes the genesis of money market funds, explains what they are, and gives insight to the size of the industry and the major players within it.

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Are you a tax expert?

Today is 15 April or Tax Day in the United States. In recognition of this day we compiled a free virtual issue on taxation bringing together content from books, online products, and journals. The material covers a wide range of specific tax-related topics including income tax, austerity, tax structure, tax reform, and more. The collection is not US-centered, but includes information on economies across the globe.

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The political economy of skills and inequality

By Marius R. Busemeyer and Torben Iversen
Inequality has been on the rise in all the advanced democracies in the past three or four decades; in some cases dramatically. Economists already know a great deal about the proximate causes.

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China’s exchange rate conundrum

Ronald McKinnon
In late February, the slow appreciation of China’s currency was interrupted by a discrete depreciation from 6.06 to 6.12 yuan per dollar. Despite making front page headlines in the Western financial press, this 1% depreciation was too small to significantly affect trade in goods and services—and hardly anything compared to how floating exchange rates change among other currencies.

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