... – basically the efficient organization of production – is possibly the great technological achievement of our age. And has yet to fully diffuse
." - link.


O novo governo, ...

... (link) pelo menos nas areas da educacao e emprego, e' uma lufada de ar fresco, de competencia e esclarecimento, quanto a mim 'a altura dos grandes desafios que o pais tem pela frente.

PS - Entrevista de Pedro Passos Coelho ao FT - link. Excerto: "The “serious difference” between his party and the Socialists of José Sócrates, the outgoing prime minister, he says, is that the PSD “believes in the changes we have to make”. "

Identifying Effective Classroom Practices Using Student Achievement Data”

Artigo de Thomas Kane, Eric S. Taylor, John H. Tyler, e Amy L. Wooten no ultimo numero do Journal of Human Resources

Research continues to find large differences in student achievement gains across teachers’ classrooms. The variability in teacher effectiveness raises the stakes on identifying effective teachers and teaching practices. This paper combines data from classroom observations of teaching practices and measures of teachers’ ability to improve student achievement as one contribution to these questions. We find that observation measures of teaching effectiveness are substantively related to student achievement growth and that some observed teaching practices predict achievement more than other practices. Our results provide information for both individual teacher development efforts, and the design of teacher evaluation systems.


"Cronyism" alargado...

... ate Outubro de 2009.

Nova versao do meu trabalho sobre a relacao entre contratacoes em empresas publicas e o ciclo eleitoral, a ser apresentado hoje aqui: resultados com periodo 2008-2009 mantem-se inalterados. (Post anterior aqui.)

Analise incluindo 2011 tera provavelmente de esperar ate os dados serem disponibilizados, provavelmente so em meados ou finais de 2012.

Aqui os efeitos por mes, em relacao aos meses de tomada de posse de um novo governo (mes 0):


"Non Cognitive Skills and Personality Traits...

Labour Market Relevance and their Development in Education & Training Systems"

IZA DP No. 5743, por Giorgio Brunello e Martin Schlotter - link. Inclui discussão do trabalho nesta área em Portugal desenvolvido pela EPIS.


This paper reviews the empirical economic literature on the relative importance of non cognitive skills for school and labour market outcomes, with a focus on Europe. There is evidence that high cognitive test scores are likely to result not only from high cognitive skills but also from high motivation and adequate personality traits. This suggests that part of the contribution of cognitive skills to economic growth could be due to personality traits. Across large parts of the literature, there is consensus that non cognitive skills have important effects both on school attainment and on labour market outcomes. These effects might be as important as the effects of cognitive skills.

Less consensus exists on the malleability of non cognitive skills, with some arguing that these skills can be altered until the end of teenage years and others claiming that emotional intelligence can be changed at any age. Most of what economists know about the technology of non cognitive skill formation concerns early educational levels, such as preschools and schools. While it is difficult to argue that all relevant skill formation ends before labour market entry, there is scant evidence on the role of the workplace in the maintenance and development of existing skills. [...]

"Three’s Company: Wall Street, Capitol Hill and K Street?"

Working paper de Deniz Igan (International Monetary Fund)


This paper explores the link between the political influence of the financial industry and financial regulation in the run-up to the global financial crisis. We construct a detailed dataset documenting the politically targeted activities of the financial industry from 1999 to 2006. The analysis shows that lobbying expenditures by the financial industry were directly linked to the position legislators took on the key bills. Network connections of lobbyists and the financial industry with the legislators were also associated with increased odds of the legislator’s position being in favor of lax regulation. These findings support the view that financial regulation is prone to be influenced by the financial industry.



"Why American Management Rules the World", HBS blog.

"In Greece, Some See a New Lehman", NY Times.

Handbook sobre impacto cientifico, LSE.

"Why debt rescues will boost the scenario of a closer union", W. Munchau (FT).

"Will Greece Make It?", Dani Rodrik: "As soon as financial markets begin to question the credibility of a government’s commitment to a fixed exchange rate, they become a force for instability. At the slightest hint of things going awry, investors and depositors pull up stakes and move capital out of the country, thereby precipitating the collapse of the currency. [...] For the Greek program to have any chance, the Papandreou government must mount a monumental effort to convince its domestic constituents that economic pain is the price they are paying for a brighter future – and not just a means to satisfy external creditors."

Discurso de António Barreto, nas comemoracoes do 10 de Junho - link.

"Alunos abandonam escola obrigatóri​a por dificuldad​es financeira​s" - Publico.

"Top 10 [US] Thriving Industries: From Biotech to prison guards" - link.


Vantagens da "big data"

Uma nova ideia que ainda nao chegou a Portugal - explorar o potencial informativo de bases de dados de grandes dimensoes, que permitem identificar padroes de grande relevancia para as politicas publicas.

Um bom exemplo nesta cronica no Guardian, sobre os efeitos das demoras nos servicos de urgencia no Canada.

PS - Outro exemplo - Google Trends - aqui.

Efeitos da educacao pre-escolar

"School-Based Early Childhood Education and Age-28 Well-Being: Effects by Timing, Dosage, and Subgroups", por por Arthur J. Reynolds, Judy A. Temple, Suh-Ruu Ou, Irma A. Artea e Barry A. B. White - link.

  • Abstract:
    Advances in understanding the effects of early education have benefited public policy and developmental science. Although preschool has demonstrated positive effects on life-course outcomes, limitations in knowledge on program scale, subgroup differences, and dosage levels have hindered progress.

    We report the effects of the Child-Parent Center Education Program on indicators of well-being up to 25 years later for more than 1400 participants. This established, publicly funded intervention begins in preschool and provides up to 6 years of service in inner-city Chicago schools.

    Relative to the comparison group receiving the usual services, program participation was independently linked to higher educational attainment, income, socioeconomic status (SES), and health insurance coverage, as well as lower rates of justice-system involvement and substance abuse.

    Evidence of enduring effects was strongest for preschool, especially for males and children of high school dropouts. The positive influence of 4 years or more of service was limited primarily to education and SES. Dosage within program components was mostly unrelated to outcomes. Findings demonstrate support for the enduring effects of sustained school-based early education to the end of the third decade of life.


    Cinco anos de...

    ... "Economia das Pessoas"!


    Links academicos

    Testes intermedios de Portugues e Matematica, no 2o ano de escolaridade - link. A alargar a outras disciplinas com urgencia?

    "Investigating Academic Impact" - Conferencia na LSE.

    Reducao do crime nos EUA - que explicacoes? - link.

    "The annuity puzzle", por Richard Thaler - link.

    "Time to make professors teach"? - link: reduzir tempo para investigacao para diminuir propinas nas universidades dos EUA?


    Links varios

    1. "Portugal Decisively Ends Leftist Rule" - no WSJ. Suspiro de alívio - já é possível evitar a bancarrota.

    Além disso, cerca de 85% dos eleitores escolhem partidos da troika, mostrando claramente o caminho que o povo quer seguir. E solução maioritária PSD+CDS permite conciliar perspectiva de longo-prazo que tanto tem faltado ao país com inevitáveis preocupações eleitorais: a dois anos difíceis de ajustamentos provavelmente seguir-se-ão dois anos já de recuperação e crescimento.

    Saída de cena de Sócrates também importante vitória da noite eleitoral, permitindo liderança mais responsável no Partido Socialista: qualquer que seja, não poderá ser mais polarizadora e destruidora do debate interno que a do agora ex-primeiro-ministro.

    Em resumo, momento bonito de Portugal - até pela feliz decisão de se cantar o hino nacional após o primeiro discurso do novo primeiro-ministro.

    2. "Ondas de insatisfação" nas admissões para o ensino superior - link. Estudo indica que candidatos não colocados nas primeiras escolhas "empurram" outros candidatos para as suas segundas ou terceiras preferências - mas que alternativa há?

    3. Peter Diamond sobre a importância da economia do trabalho na definição da política monetária - link.


    Portuguese Economic Journal

    Programa da conferência, este ano na Universidade de Aveiro, aqui.

    "Economic analysis...

    ... using linked employer and employee data" - programa da workshop das Universidades do Porto e do Minho já disponível - link.

    "Severance Pay Programs around the World: History, Rationale, Status, and Reforms"

    IZA discussion paper 5731, por Robert Holzmann, Yann Pouget, Milan Vodopivec, e Michael Weber.

    Abstract: The paper examines severance pay programs around the world by providing the first ever overview of existing programs, examining their historic development, assessing their economic rationale and describing current reform attempts. While a significant part of the paper is devoted to a comprehensive 183 cross country review of existing severance arrangements and their characteristics, the paper goes beyond a mere description. It develops and empirically tests three hypotheses about the economic rationale of the program, namely severance pay being: (i) a primitive income protection program, (ii) an efficiency enhancing human resource instrument, and (iii) a job protection instrument. The paper also reviews the recent reforms of Austria, Chile, Italy and Korea.

    "Field Experiments with Firms"

    IZA discussion paper 5723, por Oriana Bandiera, Iwan Barankay, e Imran Rasul

    Abstract: We discuss how the use of field experiments sheds light on long standing research questions relating to firm behavior. We present insights from two classes of experiments: within and across firms, and draw common lessons from both sets. Field experiments within firms generally aim to shed light on the nature of agency problems. Along these lines, we discuss how field experiments have provided new insights on shirking behavior, and the provision of monetary and non-monetary incentives. Field experiments across firms generally aim to uncover firms' binding constraints by exogenously varying the availability of key inputs such as labor, physical capital, and managerial capital. We conclude by discussing some of the practical issues researchers face when designing experiments and by highlighting areas for further research.


    Roberto Carneiro sobre as Novas Oportunidades

    "Existe ou não 'facilitismo' nas NO? Honestamente não sei." (Expresso, hoje).

    Links (muito) variados

    "20 Facts About U.S. Inequality that Everyone Should Know" - link.

    Fundacao Francisco Manuel dos Santos com novo site.

    Pacheco Pereira critica programa eleitoral do PSD por ser muito detalhado. Triste. - "Quadratura do Circulo"

    Correlacao negativa entre instrucao e voto no PS (exemplo das importantes externalidades da educacao?) - link.

    Conferencia do Banco de Portugal sobre "Wages, Turnover and Education" - link.

    100.a conferencia da OIT - link.

    "Troika vai ter tolerância zero com lei laboral" - link.


    Curso de "Stata e Econometria"...

    ... na sempre enérgica Universidade do Minho (NIPE) - link.

    "Portugal Bailout Brings Long-Prescribed Medicine: Euro Credit"

    Por Jim Silver, Bloomberg, 2 de Junho

    Douro Azul SA, an operator of river cruises in northern Portugal, had a problem with a manager at a hotel it owned: He was pinching money from the petty-cash box. When the debt ran into hundreds of euros, the company tried to fire him. “For me, a case like that would be sufficient for immediate dismissal, but the court didn’t think so,” said Mario Ferreira, Douro Azul’s founder and chairman.

    Ferreira, like many Portuguese employers, found that what he thought was a clear instance for firing didn’t persuade labor courts. Portugal’s constitution says employees may be dismissed for “just cause.” Actually doing so is hard enough that the European Union and International Monetary Fund made changes in worker-dismissal rules a condition in the nation’s 78 billion-euro ($112 billion) rescue last month.

    As with Greece, investors are skeptical Portugal will swallow its bailout medicine, which includes slashing spending, raising revenue and imposing structural changes long prescribed
    by economists and executives such as Ferreira. The yield on the country’s 10-year bond rose this week to 9.77 percent, more than three times Germany’s rate, as Portuguese voters prepare to go to the polls on June 5 to elect a new government.

    In exchange for aid, Portugal agreed to reduce workers’ severance payments, bringing them in line with the EU average. It also vowed to keep private-sector wages from growing faster than productivity; facilitate entry into the telecommunications market, and enhance phone and energy regulators’ powers; phase out rent control; and merge some of its 308 municipalities.

    ‘No Political Will’

    “The measures seem to be everything that businessmen have been talking about for a long time,” Ferreira said in an interview. In the past, “there was no political will. Now they
    can say the measures have to be implemented because they were demanded by the troika,” he said, referring to negotiators from the EU, the European Central Bank and the IMF.

    Socialist Prime Minister Jose Socrates sought the aid on April 5 after parliament rejected his proposal for extra deficit cuts amid a surge in borrowing costs, a move that prompted his
    resignation and early elections. Portugal is the third bailout victim of Europe’s debt crisis after Greece and Ireland. The extra yield investors demand to hold 10-year Portuguese bonds over German bunds of similar maturity has risen more than 200 basis points to 670 since the Social Democrats and People’s Party rejected Socrates’s austerity plan. The two parties now say they’ll join the premier’s Socialists in respecting the restrictions of the bailout package.

    Default Insurance

    The cost of insuring against a Portuguese default reached a record today as investors increased bets the country won’t be able to make good on its borrowing. Credit default swaps on the nation’s debt rose 11 basis points to 700. “Everybody knew that sooner or later we would smash against a wall,” said Peter Villax, president of the Portuguese Association of Family-Owned Companies and vice president of biomedical firm Hovione FarmaCiencia SA. “What a pity Portugal can only have good government when it is forced upon us.”

    Spending cuts and revenue increases, intended to trim the budget deficit to 3 percent of gross domestic product in 2013 from last year’s 9.1 percent, are contributing to the worst
    economic slump in decades. Portugal’s economy already has among the weakest growth rates in the euro area, expanding less than 1 percent on average in the decade through 2010.

    Two-Year Contraction

    While the government forecasts that GDP will contract 2 percent both this year and next, the economic overhaul may slowly ease the pain. Loosening labor restrictions may add 1.1
    percent to GDP over 10 years, and increasing competition for non-tradable goods such as phone services may lift economic output by 1.9 percent, the IMF estimated last year.

    Portugal made the most progress toward liberalizing labor rules from 2003 to 2009 among 28 Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development member countries, according to an
    OECD study. Still, Portugal’s rules ranked as the eighth-most restrictive among 30 countries.
    “In the past, there’s been enormous pressure to stop measures like these, to water them down,” said Pedro Magalhaes, a politics researcher at the University of Lisbon. “The narrower the next coalition is, the harder it will be to implement the measures” as the opposition often teams with special interests to block reforms, he said.

    Opening up the rental market would help rehabilitate thousands of apartments that are poorly maintained because they generate so little income, the Association for Public Works and
    Construction estimates. Housing requires about 74 billion euros of renovation work, which may generate revenue of 535 million euros a year, according to the Lisbon-based group.

    Legal Process

    Bailout terms also call for steps to speed the flow of court hearings. The number of civil cases pending rose by about 50 percent in the decade through 2009, according to the Justice
    Ministry. “The courts are full of cases; nothing happens,” said Carlos Barbot, chief executive officer of paint producer Barbot-Industria de Tintas SA, adding that it’s taken his company more
    than a decade to collect on back payments through the courts. “Sometimes they make an agreement to pay, and then they pay or they don’t pay.”

    The Bank of Portugal said May 19 that “strict” adherence to the rescue terms is “desirable and unavoidable,” warning that broad political and social support is needed to defeat “vested interests” opposed to change. Ferreira, the Douro Azul chairman, isn’t optimistic that
    elections will produce a government that will live up to Portugal’s commitments. “We need decision-makers who work like managers,” he said. “To be honest, from what I see of the ones we have, it’s almost impossible.”

    Versao final do memorando

    No site do FMI: Letter of Intent, Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies, and Technical Memorandum of Understanding (69 paginas).

    Mais restricoes ao emprego...

    ... apesar dos 12.4% de desemprego (e perspectivas de continuar a subir): proibicao de estagios nao remunerados entra em vigor na segunda-feira - link.

    Felizmente, e' uma lei "'a portuguesa", cheia de excepcoes que lhe dificultam qualquer eventual vislumbre de "enforcement": embora diga aplicar-se 'a "generalidade" dos estagiarios, exclui "os estágios curriculares, os estágios profissionais extracurriculares que tenham comparticipação pública, os estágios obrigatórios para ingressar em funções públicas, [os] estágios que correspondem a trabalho independente, [à] formação prática clínica realizada pelos médicos após a licenciatura, [ou] aos estágios de enfermagem."

    Escolhas intoleraveis na zona euro

    Martin Wolf, no FT - link.

    Excerto: "The eurozone confronts a choice between two intolerable options: either default and partial dissolution or open-ended official support. The existence of this choice proves that an enduring union will at the very least need deeper financial integration and greater fiscal support than was originally envisaged. How will the politics of these choices now play out? I truly have no idea. I wonder whether anybody does."

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