3/17/2009 9:36:00 AM By
Andrew Reamer at the Brookings Institution has a new piece out
overviewing what he sees as an economic measurement system in the United States that is in need of additional investment. We are a funder of some of this work so it should come as no surprise that I am in concurrence with most of the points he makes, but even beyond what he presents, I think most of us would recognize a deficeit in our public knowledge. Even at the national level, which in theory by the way our systems are constructed should be the most accurate and timely, recent economic releases continue to undergo huge adjustments. For an example, just look to recent GDP numbers
. This is a big topic and an important topic, not only for policy makers but for businesses who rely upon accurate and timely data for forecasting and making decisions on markets to enter, etc.
3/16/2009 5:34:00 AM By
Thursday and Friday of last week, we sponsored a workshop with the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. I was not able to attend, but the topic was one of great interest to everyone now - entrepreneurial finance. While the final proceedings from the event will come out in a special issue of Journal of Money, Credit and Banking sometime next year, working paper versions of all presentations are available on the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland's website.
3/6/2009 5:31:00 AM By
The Kauffman Foundation has launched a major, multi-year initiative to support research and writing on legal subjects relating to innovation and economic growth. Although the Foundation expects that much of the initial work by legal and economic scholars will be centered around traditional legal "silos" - intellectual property, antitrust, torts, contracts, and so on - we hope that eventually scholars will cross disciplines (within and outside the law) and engage in higher level or synthetic scholarship.
Read the full call for papers
. Read more about the initiative
3/5/2009 10:42:00 AM By
I have posted a lot this week on women's issues but that's just what has come through. This time, I was struck by a particular call for papers which specifically calls for papers which look at "how statistics, data collection and analytical processes are gendered and create a particular explanation of entrepreneurship." That's a really wide lens but one that I found interesting to think about. I see this relating to the other paper I highlighted thinking about how we measure assets can have a gender bias
. Read the full call for papers
for a special issue of The International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship.
3/5/2009 10:25:00 AM By
3/5/2009 10:02:00 AM By
The C2ER or Council for Community and Economic Research is a group which has been around since the 1960s but whom I've only become connected to in the last several months. They are holding their annual conference in Kansas City with a focus on entrepreneurship and naturally that means that we will be cooperating on a couple of projects. All of that is a long way of saying, I've only recently been added to their email chain but I have to say I have been impressed. Just this week, they sent out the following email which highlights their leadership in trying to address critical data needs at the state level. I know that BEA has some hard budget choices to make but I can't believe that they are cutting a lot of these indicators on manufacturing by state and other investments. More broadly, C2ER's work shows just how important it can be to comment and provide feedback to these seemingly trivial topics.
BEA issued its final rule early last week regarding the BE-15, survey of foreign direct investment in the U.S. http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/pdf/E9-3705.pdf. The C2ER State Chapter was one of the commenting entities, providing its input last fall. C2ER coordinated comments from other stakeholders as well.
“One comment addressed the proposed deletion of an item that collects data on the number of employees engaged in research and development. The commenter highlighted the important uses of these data and urged BEA to retain the item. In response, BEA has decided to retain this item, which does not greatly add to the cost of conducting the survey and processing the results. The other three comments urged BEA to retain state-level data on manufacturing employees, gross property, plant, and equipment, and commercial property, citing the uses of these data in connection with tracking and analyzing foreign investment in individual states, planning international trade missions and economic development activities, and justifying funding for state investment promotion programs. BEA recognizes the utility and importance of these data items, but due to resource constraints, it is unable to reinstate these items at this time.”
3/4/2009 12:06:00 PM By
One of the upcoming fronts in microdata research is matched longitudinal business records and trade data. The OECD is coordinating several efforts to get countries matching this information and from what I can tell the U.S. Census Bureau is making progress in this regard. The Center for Economic Studies (CES) at the Census Bureau recently announced the addition of foreign trade data for approved projects at the Census Research Data Centers (RDCs). These data include 2006-2007 import trade, 2006-2007 export trade and 2004-2006 exporter database.
3/4/2009 9:18:00 AM By
Many people who have considered applying to the National Science Foundation for funding are familiar with programs in specific discipliines, such as the Social and Behavioral Sciences
, but one of the most exciting, fairly recent programs that NSF has launched is around the Science of Science and Innovation Policy (SciSIP). SciSIP has an interest in funding quality research and data infrastructure development and has funded some projects which are squarely in the innovation and entrepreneurship space such as the STARS database
. Their current solicitation
has a deadline of September 9, 2009, but the hard work to develop proposals should probably begin right now for those interested.
3/4/2009 4:32:00 AM By
3/3/2009 11:13:00 AM By
I just came across a recent paper from the World Bank which takes on the general issue of how someone wanting to look at assets might think about disentangling gender from such an examination. I thought this was a really interesting topic and something I know that many struggle with in studying business ownership and wealth creation. Many businesses are co-owned by spouses, and how does one disentagle the asset effects of this? I am not totally sure, but I like the fact that this paper tries to draw out lessons from some field work that might apply more broadly to others interested in this topic.
Ownership and control over assets such as land and housing provide direct and indirect benefits to individuals and households, including a secure place to live, the means of a livelihood, protection during emergencies, and collateral for credit that can be used for investment or consumption. Unfortunately, few studies - either at the micro or macro levels- examine the gender dimensions of asset ownership. This paper sets out a framework for researchers who are interested in collecting data on individual level asset ownership and analyzing the gender asset gap. It reviews best practices in existing surveys with respect to data collection on assets at both the household and individual levels, and shows how various questions on individually owned assets can be incorporated with a minimum of effort and cost into existing multi-topic household surveys, using examples of three Living Standard Measurement Study surveys: the 1998-99 Ghana survey, the 2000 Guatemala survey, and the 1997-98 Vietnam survey questionnaires. The analysis shows that it is feasible to add a minimal set of questions to enable calculation of the gender asset gap. Adding a series of extra questions will permit a more satisfactory and nuanced analysis of asset acquisition, use, disposition, and valuation - information that is critical for policies promoting gender equality, poverty reduction, and economic growth.
This is probably most applicable to those studying microfinance