April 18, 2024


The Origins of Conditionality

How the IMF turned to austerity

Contemporary debates around the governance of the global economy often center on the role of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), arguably the most powerful international organization that—among other responsibilities—provides loans to countries in economic crisis. The most recent iteration of these debates took place in Marrakesh in October 2023, where IMF member-states agreed on increases…


April 11, 2024


The Electric Vehicle Developmental State

BYD exemplifies transformations in Chinese industrial policy

The rise of the Chinese EV industry has been enabled not only by generous government subsidies but also by profound changes in strategy and organization, and in particular by a distinctive revival of vertical integration—at both individual firm and national…

April 5, 2024


Inflation as Distributive Struggle

Milei’s relationship with the unions will determine the fate of his government

On January 24, 2024, Argentina’s General Confederation of Labor (CGT) called for a twelve-hour general strike—the first in almost five years—just forty-five days into President Javier Milei’s term. This action was a direct response to the first measures proposed by…

March 29, 2024


The Visible Hand

China’s investments into research and development

China has transformed into a leading force in science, technology, and innovation (STI). With rapidly rising research and development (R&D) expenditure, a larger and increasingly high-quality talent pool, and impressive scientific publication and patenting statistics, the country is set to…

March 28, 2024


The First New Deal

Planning, market coordination, and the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933

The National Industrial Recovery Act is commonly counterposed to antitrust. But at the time, the antitrust camp had little truck with the self-coordinating market ideal. Resistance to public price coordination experiments, meanwhile, particularly among conservative jurists, was also not based…

March 21, 2024


Offshore Treasure

ExxonMobil, Venezuela, and the battle for Guyana’s oil

Since the discovery of some of the world’s largest oil reserves in 2015, Guyana has entered a period of economic and geostrategic reconfiguration. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), Guyana holds the sixth-largest oil reserves in the Americas and…

March 14, 2024


Egyptian Leverage

The IMF invests in the Egyptian dictatorship’s structural payments imbalance

Cairo’s role in a US-backed regional security architecture makes the military dictatorship a regional giant too big to fail. The Sisi regime, like its predecessors, is keenly aware of this status and leverages it to secure the acquiescence of creditors…

March 7, 2024


Petrobras in Transition

An interview with Cibele Vieira of the Oil Workers’ Federation of Brazil

Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s campaign for his third term as Brazil’s president was defined by the idea of reconstruction. This encompassed both a political recovery from the antidemocratic reign of Jair Bolsonaro as well as the promise of reindustrialization…

February 29, 2024


Total Peace?

Gustavo Petro’s government negotiates with the ELN

Gustavo Petro’s presidency marks a turning point in Colombia’s democratic history. Not only is Petro the first leftist in government, but he has also made achieving peace a central objective of his progressive agenda. The Colombian armed conflict has been…

February 24, 2024


The G20 in the South

The Brazilian Presidency in 2024

In December 2023, Brazil began presiding over the G20. The one-year presidency, which will culminate in the annual summit being hosted in Rio de Janeiro in November 2024, is the third of four terms from the global South—following Indonesia in…

February 15, 2024


Red Sea Rivalries

Egypt, Ethiopia, and histories of maritime war

Every few years, a crisis in the Red Sea makes global headlines. In 2014, the Yemeni Civil War spilled into the Red Sea after the Houthis captured the capital Sana‘a and dissolved the parliament. As a warning, the Houthis allegedly…


April 17, 2024


New World Order?

Lender(s) of last resort, dollar dominance, and the global financial safety net

We live in a dysfunctional system in which money flows out of the countries that need it most and into the coffers of the wealthiest. In 2023, the private sector collected $68 billion more in interest and principal repayments than…

March 30, 2024


As the Lula administration tries to balance spending with fiscal rules compliance, some investors have cast doubt on the government’s target of erasing Brazil’s primary fiscal deficit by next year.

March 23, 2024


In January, Haiti paid Venezuela $500 million to settle $2.3 billion in arrears from PetroCaribe loans. Between 2005 and 2014, PetroCaribe became the largest single source of concessional finance to Caribbean countries, more than doubling US foreign assistance to the region.

March 21, 2024


100 Days of Milei

Argentina under the “chainsaw”

Javier Milei’s election to the Argentine presidency in November sent shockwaves throughout the country. While the media personality was not altogether an outsider, his party La Libertad Avanza (LLA), formed in 2021, fundamentally lacked political experience. Until Milei’s inauguration in…

March 16, 2024


On March 6, Egypt agreed to float its currency in exchange for a $5 billion increase in its current loan program with the IMF. It remains to be seen how long the Egyptian pound may remain flexible, as the inflationary effects of a devalued currency…

March 14, 2024


Liberal Blindspots

An interview with Chris Shaw

Protests led by farmers have been roiling Europe for months. In Belgium, Germany, Romania, the Netherlands, Poland, and France, farmers—armed with grievances ranging from subsidized Ukrainian grain imports to the EU-Mercosur trade deal and falling prices—have been taking to the…

March 2, 2024


The CHIPS and Science Act aspires to draw the manufacturing of US leading technologies back into domestic supply chains. Speaking on the policy’s implementation, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo stated earlier this week that the US is on track to manufacture 20 percent of leading-edge logic chips…

March 2, 2024


Oil Linkages

State-led development in Angola and Nigeria

Oil and gas producers in Africa face unique challenges in pursuing state-led development. The resource curse, and specifically the phenomenon of “Dutch disease”, which inflates the value of the local currency, makes exporting local products abroad difficult. As long as…

February 24, 2024


In light of Israel’s assault on Gaza post-October 7 and growing instability in the region, S&P Global and Moody’s have both downgraded Israel’s credit rating to “negative.” Israeli finance minister and extremist settler Bezalel Smotrich called the revisions “alarmist” and politically motivated. 

February 17, 2024


On Thursday, a few months ahead of nationwide elections, India’s Supreme Court banned electoral bonds—anonymous political donations sold by the State Bank of India. Since the Modi government introduced electoral bonds in 2017, more than $1.9 billion in secret donations have been distributed to political parties. 

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