Why don’t all countries adopt good institutions?

“The only justifiable purpose of political institutions is to ensure the unhindered development of the individual.” Albert Einstein

Having good institutions that guarantee citizens a large degree of economic freedom has been shown to be strongly correlated with the usual development indicators, such as GDP per capita, life expectancy, and literacy rates, and negatively correlated with poverty, child labor, child mortality and informality (1).

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Gross National Happiness

Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.
Henry David Thoreau

“Being rich is having money; being wealthy is having time.”
Margaret Bonnano

“The problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them.”
Albert Einstein

Economists, especially development economists, almost always measure the level of well-being in a society by per capita income, noticing that this simple economic measure is highly correlated with most other indicators of development they can think of (life expectancy, child mortality, income equality, education levels, etc.).

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Reverse Psychology in Migration Policy

Reverse psychology is frequently applied by parents: If you want your kids to do something (like washing the dishes or mowing the lawn), tell them they can’t. That is often much more effective than begging or threatening them to do it.

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Believe it or not: Bolivia is one of the World’s Top Emerging Tourism Destinations!

The World Tourism Organization publishes facts and figures on international tourism, including a table of the World’s Top Emerging Tourism Destinations, as measured by the growth in international tourist arrivals.

The good news is that Bolivia has made it to the table! (Mexico and Brazil didn’t). The bad news is that it is at the very bottom of the table. Of the 76 countries included, Bolivia was last with an average annual growth rate in international tourist arrivals of 4.0% between 1995 and 2004.

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Is International Migration Increasing?

Most people would find the answer to that question so obvious that they wouldn’t even bother to check the data.

According to UN data, the number of people counted as living outside their country of birth has almost doubled during the last 50 years–increasing to 191 million in 2005, the highest number ever recorded (1). But the World population has more than doubled during the same period, so international migrants still constitute just a bit less than 3% of the World’s population.

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Treat Your Migrants Better!

“Patriotism is your conviction that your country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.”
George Bernard Shaw (1856 – 1950)

There are surprisingly few international migrants in the world. Only around 3% of the worlds population live in another country than the one where they were born (1).

Considering how many fantastic places there are in this world, it is quite surprising that most people are contented with staying all their lives in the place where they just happened to be born. Read More »

Bolivia in the Flat World

In China, when you are one in a million – there are 1300 other people just like you. Microsoft saying in Beijing

Globalization has recently shifted into warp drive, integrating the world and increasing competition in a way we have never experienced before. Many services that used to be non-tradable (like accounting), are now being done just as well on the other side of the globe at a fraction of the cost.

And many services that previously could only be supplied by large organizations can now be done just as well, or better, by independent individuals (news reporting, for example). Barriers are tumbling down all over the world, and everybody with an Internet connection and an imagination can do really well (1). Read More »


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