Publications

    In the spring of 2009, cases of a previously unidentified strain of influenza began appearing in Mexico and the southwestern U.S. Within just a few months, outbreaks of 2009 Novel H1N1 (commonly referred to as Swine Flu) were so widespread that the World Health Organization declared its first influenza pandemic in over 40 years. This case focuses on how state health officials in Texas, which experienced some of the first cases of H1N1, organized a response to the disease in the face of considerable uncertainty regarding its contagiousness, lethality, and geographic spread. The case prompts readers to contemplate the challenges of responding to a rapidly unfolding event featuring a high degree of novelty, the benefits and limitations of pre-event preparedness efforts, and the difficulties of coordinating an effective response among a number of partners and across multiple levels of government.

    Vietnam Program, July 2010

    A broad consensus has emerged in Vietnam that higher education is in need of deep and wide-reaching reform. This consensus extends from students and their families to public intellectuals and educators to policymakers at the highest levels of government. Vietnam‘s national competitiveness increasingly depends on skilled human capital, which its higher education system is not delivering. Ever growing numbers of families are choosing to send their children abroad for undergraduate and even high school education in order for them to acquire the skills and credentials needed to succeed in the global economy.

    From Reformasi to Institutional Transformation: A Strategic Assessment of Indonesia's Prospects for Growth, Equity, and Democratic Governance

    Rajawali Foundation Institute for Asia, Kompas Gramedia Group, 2010

    Rates of economic growth in Indonesia have returned to the levels experienced before the global economic crisis of 2007-08. And yet other countries in Asia, such as China, India, Thailand, Malaysia, and The Philippines have been growing even faster. Compared to these countries, Indonesia is quickly being left behind in terms of foreign direct investment, manufacturing growth, infrastructure investments, and educational attainment. Like a marathoner carrying a twenty kilogram pack, Indonesia can see the competition pulling away but is powerless to pick up the pace. Indonesia must engage in a thorough process of institutional transformation if it is to shed the legacy of Guided Democracy and the New Order and learn to compete in an ever globalizing economy.

    From the Ground Up: Improving Government Performance with Independent Monitoring Organizations
    Griffin, Charles, Stephen Kosack, and Courtney Tolmie. 2010. From the Ground Up: Improving Government Performance with Independent Monitoring Organizations. Brookings Institution Press. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Charles Griffin, Stephen Kosack, and Courtney Tolmie, Brookings Institution Press, 2010

    From the Ground Up proposes that the international community’s efforts to improve public expenditure and budget execution decisions would be more effective if done in collaboration with local independent monitoring organizations. The authors track the work of 16 independent monitoring organizations from across the developing world, demonstrating how these relatively small groups of local researchers produce both thoughtful analysis and workable solutions. They achieve these results because their vantage point allows them to more effectively discern problems with governance and to communicate with their fellow citizens about the ideals and methods of good governance.

    From the Ground Up: Improving Government Performance with Independent Monitoring Organizations
    Griffin, Charles, Stephen Kosack, and Courtney Tolmie. 2010. From the Ground Up: Improving Government Performance with Independent Monitoring Organizations. Brookings Institution Press. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Charles Griffin, Stephen Kosack, and Courtney Tolmie, Brookings Institution Press, 2010

    From the Ground Up proposes that the international community's efforts to improve public expenditure and budget execution decisions would be more effective if done in collaboration with local independent monitoring organizations. The authors track the work of 16 independent monitoring organizations from across the developing world, demonstrating how these relatively small groups of local researchers produce both thoughtful analysis and workable solutions. They achieve these results because their vantage point allows them to more effectively discern problems with governance and to communicate with their fellow citizens about the ideals and methods of good governance.

    Herman B. Leonard and Arnold M. Howitt, September 2010

    The horrific events of Black Saturday (February 7, 2009) in Victoria, Australia, constitute an extreme event. In January and February of 2009, Victoria experienced unprecedented climatic conditions of drought and heat that brought the state to a literally explosive fire condition, with tinder-dry fuels across the state needing only a combination of wind and an ignition source to touch off potentially devastating fires. Over the course of January and early February, firefighters responded to literally hundreds of fires. In the first week of February, historically high temperatures prevailed across the state, with new records set in many locations. Melbourne experienced temperatures for three consecutive days above 43 degrees Celsius (109 degrees Fahrenheit), further exacerbating already historically-threatening fire conditions.

    The New School, June 2009

    Knowledge and human capital are now the main drivers of economic development and the key determinants of national competitiveness. The role of research universities in the development process has changed as a result of the emergence of the knowledge economy. Research universities educate a country's most talented students, irrespective of socioeconomic status; their graduates serve society in important ways, as innovators, entrepreneurs, managers, civil servants, and political and civic leaders. In developing countries, apex research universities often play a critical role in adapting advancements in global knowledge to conditions in their own countries. The knowledge generated by research universities contributes to social well being and prosperity. Research universities are increasingly viewed as symbols of national prestige. Having a handful of research universities benefits the entire national education system by producing highly qualified professors and teachers. For all of these reasons, countries have expended vast sums of money in an effort to build world-class research universities. However, the results of these efforts have been mixed.

    Vietnam Program, March 2009

    During two weeks in January 2009 a team from the Rajawali Foundation Institute for Asia, International Development Enterprises (IDE), and the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation of the Union of Myanmar conducted a humanitarian assessment of food production and the agricultural economy in Myanmar. This report summarizing the team's findings and focuses on paddy production, because rice is the country's staple crop. Based on field work in cyclone-affected areas of the Ayeyarwady River Delta and in Upper Myanmar, the report concludes that paddy output is likely to drop in 2009, potentially creating a food shortage by the third quarter. Estimates are based on imperfect data, and this scenario may not materialize, but the avoidance of a food shortage this year would represent a temporary reprieve, not a recovery.

    Fung, Archon, Mary Graham, and David Weil. 2009. “Suggestions for Improving Transparency Policies”. Read Full Paper Abstract

    Archon Fung, Mary Graham, and David Weil; March 2009

    The authors offer several suggestions for ways that the federal government can improve transparency. The first section describes several general policies to create better disclosure systems; the second section offers some prototype and experimental initiatives that might begin in short order.

    Dwight Perkins and Vu Thanh Tu Anh, March 2009

    Vietnam has made a remarkable transition since 1989 from a centrally planned industrial sector dominated by administrative allocation of inputs and outputs to an industrial sector governed mainly by market forces. Furthermore, Vietnam accomplished this transition while avoiding the sharp fall in GDP and industrial output that occurred in so many other centrally planned economies. In the 1980s, Vietnamese exports covered less than half of the country's relatively small import requirements and virtually no Vietnamese industries were capable of selling their products in the demanding markets of Europe and North America. Twenty years later Vietnamese exports are twenty fold what they were in the 1980s and industrial products sold around the world are the largest contributors to these export sales.

    Dapice, David, and Nguyen Xuan Thanh. 2009. “Vietnam’s Infrastructure Constraints”. Read Full Paper Abstract

    David Dapice and Nguyen Xuan Thanh, February 2009

    Successful countries provide economy and society with infrastructure needed to maintain growth. Development experience suggests that investing 7 percent of GDP in infrastructure is the right order of magnitude for high and sustained growth. Over the last twelve years, the government of Vietnam was able to sustain infrastructure investment at 10 percent of GDP. This remarkably high level of investment has resulted in a rapid expansion of infrastructure stocks and improved access. Despite this achievement, Vietnam is experiencing more and more infrastructure weaknesses that negatively affect its ability to sustain high economic growth in the long term. Transport and electricity – the two most essential infrastructure activities – appear to be the weakest infrastructure sectors in Vietnam with blackouts and traffic jams occurring more and more frequently.

    Thanh, Nguyen Xuan, and David Dapice. 2009. “Vietnam’s Infrastructure Constraints”. Read the full report Abstract

    Nguyen Xuan Thanh, David Dapice, February 2009

    Successful countries provide economy and society with infrastructure needed to maintain growth. Development experience suggests that investing 7 percent of GDP in infrastructure is the right order of magnitude for high and sustained growth. Over the last twelve years, the government of Vietnam was able to sustain infrastructure investment at 10 percent of GDP. This remarkably high level of investment has resulted in a rapid expansion of infrastructure stocks and improved access. Despite this achievement, Vietnam is experiencing more and more infrastructure weaknesses that negatively affect its ability to sustain high economic growth in the long term. Transport and electricity – the two most essential infrastructure activities – appear to be the weakest infrastructure sectors in Vietnam with blackouts and traffic jams occurring more and more frequently.

    The Public Innovator's Playbook: Nurturing Bold Ideas in Government
    Eggers, William D., and Shalabh Kumar Singh. 2009. The Public Innovator's Playbook: Nurturing Bold Ideas in Government. Deloitte Research. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    William D. Eggers & Shalabh Kumar Singh, Deloitte Research, 2009

    The Public Innovator’s Playbook, published by Deloitte Research in the U.S. with the Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center, describes how governments have the opportunity to help improve the economic environment, create jobs, and more efficiently manage costs. According to the book, governments currently innovate. Moreover, some creative approaches in the private sector come from the public sector. However, few governments take an integrated view of the process or treat it as a discipline – which includes methodical processes, reward systems, and a mission linked to the process and organizational structure.

    China Rules
    lan Alon,, Julian Chang, Marc Fetscherin, Christoph Latteman, and John R. McIntyre, ed. 2009. China Rules. Palgrave Macmillan. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Ilan Alon, Julian Chang, Marc Fetscherin, Christoph Latteman, and John R. McIntyre, editors, Palgrave Macmillan, 2009

    The development of the Chinese multinational is a new feature of globalization. This book deals in the first section with the political economy and governance of China. The contemporary discourse of the internationalization of Chinese enterprises is discussed from different theoretical perspectives and shows how it will reshape global competition, and how the new corporate governance structures impact the long-term performance of state-owned enterprises in China. The second section assesses international trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) by Chinese firms and their impact on developed countries. The effects of China's policy and regulatory change on outward FDI are outlined and a Sino-EU Intra-Industry Trade and FDI analysis explores the nature of the challenge facing the EU. Section three describes the developments in certain Chinese industries, such as telecommunications, electronics and automotives, and explains companies and government strategies to gain access to global natural resources.

    Jay Rosengard and Huynh The Du, January 2009

    Given the importance of financial sector development for sustained economic growth, especially in the context of Vietnam’s own performance since embarking the Đổi Mới economic reforms twenty years ago, the objective of this study is to analyze the financial sector development in Vietnam and China within the framework of financial sector reforms introduced in the two countries. The study assesses the progress to date and future challenges for each country; compares and contrasts financial sector reform strategies and performance; and formulates policy recommendations for further financial sector reform in Vietnam.

    Thanh, Nguyen Xuan, Vu Thanh Tu Anh, David Dapice, Jonathan Pincus, and Ben Wilkinson. 2009. “Structural Change: The Only Effective Stimulus”. Read Full Paper Abstract

    Nguyen Xuan Thanh, Vu Thanh Tu Anh, David Dapice, Jonathan Pincus, and Ben Wilkinson, January 2009

    This paper responds to a request from the Vietnamese government for an analysis of the impact of the global economic crisis on Vietnam, and policy recommendations to help the government stimulate growth and reduce the risk of financial crisis. The government has proposed an economic stimulus valued at six billion U.S. dollars, although details of this plan are still being worked out as this document is prepared. The roots of macroeconomic instability in Vietnam are domestic, and that the appropriate policy response is structural change. This paper argues that the deepening of the international economic downturn strengthens the case for structural reforms. Further, the paper suggests that the fiscal and monetary stimulus proposed by the government will not have the desired impact but will instead accelerate inflation and increase systemic financial risks. The authors recommend an alternative set of policies including gradual depreciation of the VND and adjustments to the public investment program to delay capital and import intensive projects in favor of labor intensive projects that do not rely heavily on imports.

    Managing Crises: Responses to Large-Scale Emergencies
    Howitt, Arnold M., Herman B. Leonard, and David W. Giles, ed. 2009. Managing Crises: Responses to Large-Scale Emergencies. CQ Press. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Arnold M. Howitt, Herman B. Leonard, and David W. Giles, editors, CQ Press, 2009

    From floods to fires, tornadoes to terrorist attacks, governments must respond to a variety of crises and meet reasonable standards of performance. What accounts for governments’ effective responses to unfolding disasters? How should they organize and plan for significant emergencies? With twelve adapted Kennedy School cases, readers experience first-hand a series of large-scale emergencies and come away with a clear sense of the different types of disaster situations governments confront, with each type requiring different planning, resourcing, skill-building, leadership, and execution.

    de Jong, Jorrit, and Gowher Rizvi, ed. 2009. The State of Access: Success and Failure of Democracies to Create Equal Opportunities. Brookings Institution Press. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Jorrit de Jong and Gowher Rizvi, editors, Brookings Institution Press, 2009

    The State of Access documents a worrisome gap between principles and practice in democratic governance. This book is a comparative, cross-disciplinary exploration of the ways in which democratic institutions fail or succeed to create the equal opportunities that they have promised to deliver to the people they serve. In theory, rules and regulations may formally guarantee access to democratic processes, public services, and justice. But reality routinely disappoints, for a number of reasons – exclusionary policymaking, insufficient attention to minorities, underfunded institutions, inflexible bureaucracies. The State of Access helps close the gap between the potential and performance in democratic governance.

    Unlocking the Power of Networks: Keys to High Performance Government
    Goldsmith, Stephen, and Donald Kettl, ed. 2009. Unlocking the Power of Networks: Keys to High Performance Government. Brookings Institution Press. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Stephen Goldsmith and Donald Kettl, editors, Brookings Institution Press, 2009

    The era of textbook top-down, stovepiped public management in America is over, and the traditional dichotomy between public ownership and privatization is an outdated notion. Public executives have shifted their focus from managing workers and directly providing services to orchestrating networks of public, private, and nonprofit organizations to deliver those services. In this new book, Stephen Goldsmith and Donald Kettl head a stellar cast of policy practitioners and scholars exploring the potential, strategies, and best practices of high-performance networks while identifying next-generation issues in public sector network management. Unlocking the Power of Networks employs sector-specific analyses to reveal how networked governance achieves previously unthinkable policy goals.

    Power and Restraint: A Shared Vision for the U.S.-China Relationship
    Rosecrance, Richard, and Gu Guoliang, ed. 2009. Power and Restraint: A Shared Vision for the U.S.-China Relationship. PublicAffairs. Visit Publisher's Site Abstract

    Richard Rosecrance and Gu Guoliang, editors, PublicAffairs, 2009

    Over several years, some of the most distinguished Chinese and American scholars have engaged in a major research project, sponsored by the China-U.S. Exchange Foundation (USEF), to address the big bilateral and global issues the two countries face. Historically, the ascension of a great power has resulted in armed conflict. This group of scholars – experts in politics, economics, international security, and environmental studies – set out to establish consensus on potentially contentious issues and elaborate areas where the two nations can work together to achieve common goals. Featuring essays on global warming, trade relations, Taiwan, democratization, WMDs, and bilateral humanitarian intervention, Power and Restraint finds that China and the United States can exist side by side and establish mutual understanding to better cope with the common challenges they face. HKS Professors Graham Allison, Joseph Nye, and Anthony Saich contribute chapters. Editor Richard Rosecrance elaborates on the book's findings.

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