Economics & Global Affairs

40 Items

An investor monitors stock prices in Beijing after U.S. President Donald Trump re-imposes sanctions on Iran, May 19, 2018.

Ng Han Guan (AP)

Analysis & Opinions - The Diplomat

To Manage Great Power Competition, America Needs a New Economic Patriot Act

| Apr. 17, 2019

Shifts in the global economy have altered Washington’s sanctions calculus. In today’s era of great power competition, priority threats are no longer rogue states with little economic clout but nations with systemically important financial institutions and economic linkages. Russia and China top the list.

America’s sanctions strategy, however, hasn’t evolved to meet this challenge. Section 311 of the Patriot Act remains a powerful tool, but its collateral costs are too high to confront banks that are too big to fail. It’s time for a new Economic Patriot Act that can provide the scalpel-like instruments Washington needs to thwart our adversaries with speed and precision.

Transformed Gas Markets Fuel US-Russian Rivalry, But Europe Plays Key Role Too

Max Avdeev/Flikr

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

Transformed Gas Markets Fuel US-Russian Rivalry, But Europe Plays Key Role Too

| May 30, 2018

This month, the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. President Donald Trump has been pressuring Germany to drop its support for a major new Russian gas pipeline if Europe wants to avoid a trade war with Washington, while a senior U.S. diplomat warned that the project could be hit with U.S. sanctions; Russian President Vladimir Putin responded defiantly. This development, sadly, fuels the further politicization of the European gas market—a space that, in many ways, has reflected the triumphs of a depoliticized, pro-market technocracy, which has managed to stimulate competition and lower prices irrespective of changing political trends. Just last year, Trump called on European countries to buy American liquefied natural gas, or LNG, which, for now, remains more expensive than Russia’s pipeline gas. Certainly, the U.S. has much to gain on the global gas market, which has changed drastically over the past decade, as America rapidly transformed from an importer to an exporter. Europe’s gas market, meanwhile, has much to gain from additional supply. But Trump’s approach, especially if the latest reports are true, both alienates Western European partners and feeds into a sensationalist, simplistic portrayal of the new U.S. role’s effect on Russia—as a zero-sum game, in which these new, plentiful U.S. gas supplies serve as an antidote to Russia's “gas dominance” in Europe and hence to Moscow's political leverage.

Tokyo at night

Flickr / Agustin Rafael Reyes

Paper - London School of Economics

Global Review of Finance For Sustainable Urban Infrastructure

    Authors:
  • Graham Floater
  • Dan Dowling
  • Denise Chan
  • Matthew Ulterino
  • Tim McMinn
  • Ehtisham Ahmad
| December 2017

This paper is a background review representing part of the initial phase of the Financing the Urban Transition work program. The review builds on a growing body of research that highlights both the importance of national sustainable infrastructure and the need to develop more effective and efficient financing mechanisms for delivering compact, connected cities that meet the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. While progress has been made in both these areas over the last five years, there remains a policy gap between the international/national level and the municipal level.

Natalie Jaresko at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Benn Craig

News

Natalie Jaresko discusses her time as Finance Minister of Ukraine with Harvard's Future of Diplomacy Project

| Dec. 21, 2016

Natalie Jaresko (MPP ’89), former Finance Minister of Ukraine, returned to Harvard on October 31st, 2016 to take part in the Future of Diplomacy Project’s international speaker series. In a public seminar moderated by Faculty Director Nicholas Burns, Jaresko, who currently serves as chairwoman of the Aspen Institute Kyiv, reflected on her time in office from 2014 to 2016. In her two years in office, the Ukrainian government  had to contend with the Russian annexation of Crimea, a national debt crisis, widespread governmental corruption, and political instability.

Gas pipeline Dzuarikau-Tskhinval

Wikimedia Commons

Journal Article - Elsevier Inc. Energy Research & Social Science

Invisible but not indivisible: Russia, the European Union, and the importance of “Hidden Governance”

| February 2016

This article considers a number of political explanations for gas policy and shows that it is usually the economic interests of big energy firms that frequently take precedence, although these are often ignored and hidden as factors.

The world is getting better. Why don’t we believe it?

commons.wikimedia.org

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

The world is getting better. Why don’t we believe it?

| January 26, 2016

It would seem entirely reasonable to conclude that the world has taken several turns for the worse since President George H.W. Bush delivered his famous “new world order” address. The United Nations estimates that more than 250,000 people have perished in Syria’s civil war, and another million or so have been injured. With vast swathes of the Middle East collapsing, the Islamic State continues to wreak havoc, increasingly inspiring and coordinating attacks outside the region.

The EU Regulatory State, Commission Leadership and External Energy Governance

Palgrave Macmillan

Book Chapter - Palgrave Macmillan

The EU Regulatory State, Commission Leadership and External Energy Governance

| 2015

The chapter discusses the EU as an actor in global energy, and shows that the EU – short of a strong set of policy tools – relies more than other players on exporting its own rules. It explores the areas in which the Commission is capable of exerting (regulatory) external power in the energy sector and assesses the Commission's actions with regards to the challenges facing the EU along the energy value chain: upstream, midstream and downstream.

People walk past an exchange office screen showing the currency exchange rates of the Russian ruble, U.S. dollar and euro, in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016. The Russian ruble slid to a record low against the dollar Wednesday under pressure from the low oil price, beating a mark set when the currency crashed in value in December 2014 before stabilizing. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko).

AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko

Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

Putin’s Russia: Claims Versus Reality

| Nov. 15, 2015

Russia’s leaders and population are facing a number of long-term adverse trends, including inefficiency of the economy, insufficient quality of governance, pervasive corruption, fragility of demographic improvements, home-grown and transnational terrorism, instability in neighboring countries and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. But the existence of these long-term trends, confluence of some of which, if unaddressed, could eventually come to pose very serious challenges to the Russian statehood, is no excuse for misunderstanding or distorting the current realities in Russia.