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Economies, Volume 3, Issue 4 (December 2015) – 6 articles , Pages 150-259

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Open AccessArticle
Revisiting “Southern” Sprawl: Urban Growth, Socio-Spatial Structure and the Influence of Local Economic Contexts
Economies 2015, 3(4), 237-259; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040237 - 21 Dec 2015
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 4603
Abstract
Given its unpredictable nature, urban sprawl in the Mediterranean region is considered an intriguing (and intricate) socioeconomic issue. Since the 1970s, urban dispersion advanced rapidly in southern Europe—irrespective of a city’s size and morphology—with urbanization rates growing faster than population. A comparison between [...] Read more.
Given its unpredictable nature, urban sprawl in the Mediterranean region is considered an intriguing (and intricate) socioeconomic issue. Since the 1970s, urban dispersion advanced rapidly in southern Europe—irrespective of a city’s size and morphology—with urbanization rates growing faster than population. A comparison between the metropolitan areas of Barcelona, Rome and Athens reveals how sprawl has occurred in different ways in the three cities, highlighting peculiar relationships between urbanization, land-use and economic structures. Sharing common drivers of change related to population dynamics, socio-spatial structure and deregulated urban expansion, sprawl has adapted to the local economic, cultural and environmental context. Barcelona shows a dispersion pattern towards a more spatially-balanced morphology, with expanding sub-centres distributed around the central city, Rome appears to be mostly scattered around the historical city with fragmented urban fabric and heterogeneous economic functions, Athens is denser, with polarized economic spaces and social segregation. Understanding how place-specific factors influence processes of settlement dispersion in Mediterranean contexts may inform policies of urban containment and land-use management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Economy)
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Open AccessEditorial
Financial Reform and Economic Development
Economies 2015, 3(4), 235-236; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040235 - 21 Dec 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3287
Abstract
The crucial role of the financial sector in the process of economic development and growth is widely acknowledged by scholars and policymakers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Financial Reform and Economic Development)
Open AccessArticle
Catastrophic Economic Consequences of Healthcare Payments: Effects on Poverty Estimates in Egypt, Jordan, and Palestine
Economies 2015, 3(4), 216-234; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040216 - 26 Nov 2015
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 5329
Abstract
Healthcare payments could drive households with no health insurance coverage into financial catastrophe, which might lead them to cut spending on necessities, sell assets, or use credit. In extreme cases, healthcare payments could have devastating consequences on the household economic status that would [...] Read more.
Healthcare payments could drive households with no health insurance coverage into financial catastrophe, which might lead them to cut spending on necessities, sell assets, or use credit. In extreme cases, healthcare payments could have devastating consequences on the household economic status that would push them into extreme poverty. Using nationally representative surveys from three Arab countries, namely, Egypt, Jordan, and Palestine, this paper examines the incidence, intensity and distribution of catastrophic health payments, and assesses the poverty impact of out-of-pocket health payments (OOP). The OOP for healthcare were considered catastrophic if it exceeded 10% of a household’s total expenditure or 40% of non-food expenditure. The poverty impact was evaluated using poverty head counts and poverty gaps before and after OOP. Results show that OOP exacerbate households’ living severely in Egypt, pushing more than one-fifth of the population into a financial catastrophe and 3% into extreme poverty in 2011. However, in Jordan and Palestine, the disruptive impact of OOP remains modest over time. In the three countries, the catastrophic health payment is the problem of the better off households. Poverty alleviation policies should help reduce the reliance on OOP to finance healthcare. Moving toward universal health coverage could also be a promising option to protect households from the catastrophic economic consequences of health care payments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Education and Health in Economic Development)
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Open AccessArticle
The Redistribution of Trade Gains When Income Inequality Matters
Economies 2015, 3(4), 186-215; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040186 - 28 Oct 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3686
Abstract
How does a redistribution of trade gains affect welfare when income inequality matters? To answer this question, we extend the [1] model to unionized labor markets and heterogeneous workers. As redistribution schemes, we consider unemployment benefits that are financed either by a wage [...] Read more.
How does a redistribution of trade gains affect welfare when income inequality matters? To answer this question, we extend the [1] model to unionized labor markets and heterogeneous workers. As redistribution schemes, we consider unemployment benefits that are financed either by a wage tax, a payroll tax or a profit tax. Assuming that welfare declines in income inequality, we find that welfare increases up to a maximum in the case of wage tax funding, while welfare declines weakly (sharply) if a profit tax (payroll tax) is implemented. These effects are caused by the wage tax neutrality (due to union wage setting) and by a profit tax-induced decline in long-term unemployment. As a result, the government’s optimal redistribution scheme is to finance unemployment benefits by a wage tax. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Globalization and Inequality)
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Education on Conflict Intensity in Africa
Economies 2015, 3(4), 161-185; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040161 - 09 Oct 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3957
Abstract
This study investigates the impact of different schooling dimensions (primary, secondary and tertiary) on the intensity of intra-state conflicts in 25 African states during the period 1989–2008. It uses fixed-effects and Generalized Methods of Moments (GMM) estimators in an annualized panel data framework. [...] Read more.
This study investigates the impact of different schooling dimensions (primary, secondary and tertiary) on the intensity of intra-state conflicts in 25 African states during the period 1989–2008. It uses fixed-effects and Generalized Methods of Moments (GMM) estimators in an annualized panel data framework. Parameter estimates suggest the following (1) primary schooling broadly mitigates conflicts in Africa. However, in environments with high natural resource rents, it could ignite conflicts; (2) there is evidence, although not overwhelming, that secondary schooling potentially drives conflicts in Africa. There is also evidence that urbanization potentially drives conflicts in Africa. However, although secondary schooling and urbanization potentially drives conflicts, in environments where secondary schooling (urbanization) is high, urbanization (secondary schooling) mitigates conflicts; (3) there is no evidence of a strong direct positive impact of tertiary education on conflicts and conditioning on tertiary schooling, income inequality potentially drives conflicts in African states. However, in contexts where income inequality (tertiary schooling) is high, tertiary schooling (inequality) mitigates conflict. Two important policy implications follow from this study. First, in contexts where income inequality is high (for instance, in South Africa), governments should strive to foster tertiary education in order to reduce conflict. Second, where urbanization rates are high, they should foster both secondary and tertiary education. This study contributes to existing knowledge by clearly demonstrating the utility of distinguishing between different educational dimensions and the contexts wherein they matter for conflict mitigation in Africa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Education and Health in Economic Development)
Open AccessArticle
Economic Development and Government Spending: An Exploration of Wagner’s Hypothesis during Fifty Years of Growth in East Asia
Economies 2015, 3(4), 150-160; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies3040150 - 08 Oct 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 5107
Abstract
Applicability of Wagner’s hypothesis to six East Asian countries is studied for a period of nearly a half-century during which their economic growth has often been termed as a “miracle”. Despite the high rates of growth in most cases, there is little indication [...] Read more.
Applicability of Wagner’s hypothesis to six East Asian countries is studied for a period of nearly a half-century during which their economic growth has often been termed as a “miracle”. Despite the high rates of growth in most cases, there is little indication to support the hypothesis except for Japan and possibly Korea. This finding is broadly supported by a variety of tests of cointegration using time-series as well as panel data. Full article
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