May 18, 2024

Analysis

Underdevelopment and War

Dependency, neocolonialism, and the agrarian problem in Colombia

In the 1960s and 70s, the Colombian national government embarked on an ambitious agrarian reform program to address poverty in the increasingly violent countryside. Under the bipartisan project of the National Front, which alternated power between the Conservative and Liberal parties, these efforts sparked domestic and international debates around the nature of developmentalism in the…

Longform

May 23, 2024

Interviews

Positioning Aden

Gregory Brew and Kaleb Demerew on oil and the Red Sea

Prior to October 2023, about a seventh  of global maritime trade passed through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea to and from the Suez Canal. As a result of attacks by Houthi fighters on commercial ocean freight traveling…

May 16, 2024

Interviews

The Techno-Patrimonial Welfare State

An interview with Yamini Aiyar on the BJP’s “new welfarism” in India

The success of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the last decade of Indian politics, and its frontrunner status in this year’s parliamentary elections, has often been attributed to its welfare policies. The rise of Direct Benefit Transfers (DBT)—whereby beneficiaries…

May 9, 2024

Analysis

Supply-Side Healthcare?

The politics of hospital care and construction

In 2019, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law that deregulated new hospital construction and unleashed a “hospital-building boom.” Some 65 new hospitals were planned in the three years after DeSantis signed the bill ending decades-old regulations on…

May 2, 2024

Analysis

Partners in Growth?

Tata and the evolution of state-capital relations in independent India

With general elections continuing into early June, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are poised to begin a second decade in power. In the realm of political economy, it is meant to be the…

May 2, 2024

Analysis

The Iron Farm Bill

Agricultural policy coalitions in the age of climate crisis

Agriculture directly accounts for 10 percent of US greenhouse gas emissions. These emissions, which do not include onsite fossil-fuel use, come from soil and manure management and the digestive processes of ruminants, mostly cattle. Worse, there is a substantial “carbon…

April 25, 2024

Analysis

Illiberal Developmentalism

Indonesia under Prabowo

The election of Prabowo Subianto to the Indonesian presidency two months ago has been warmly welcomed by business and political elites in the country. The day following the result, the Jakarta composite index rose by 1.3 percent, a tacit sign…

April 25, 2024

Interviews

A Progressive Tax Reform?

An interview with José Antonio Ocampo, Colombia’s former Minister of Finance

In 2022, Gustavo Petro, Colombia’s first left-wing president of the twenty-first century, emerged victorious alongside a coalition of liberal ministers experienced in the public sector and academia. One key figure in this coalition was José Antonio Ocampo, an academic with…

April 25, 2024

Analysis

Desenrola Brazil

Debt management as social policy under Lula 3

Credit in Brazil—and particularly consumer credit—is expensive, but ubiquitous. Exclusion from the credit market, where basic needs not covered by wages are increasingly financed, is now a threat to the very social reproduction of the working classes. Accordingly, the massive…

April 11, 2024

Analysis

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

Analysis

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…

Shortform

May 23, 2024

Analysis

The Productivity Gap

Rethinking corporate-led industrialization in India

Standard development economics anticipates that the composition of a country’s labor force will go hand in hand with the composition of output, reflected in the division between the primary, secondary, and services sectors. But contemporary India, as well as several…

May 20, 2024

Sources

On May 13, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved Order No. 1920, the most comprehensive overhaul to electric transmission policy in over a decade. The new rule adopts requirements for transmission operators to conduct long-term transmission planning over a 20-year time horizon and includes a provision…

May 17, 2024

Analysis

Great Green Wall

Cat and mouse games are afoot

Biden’s announcement this week to sharply raise tariffs on Chinese imports is an escalation in the yearslong tariff war on China. The new tariffs specifically target green goods, most notably electric vehicles, duties on which have now quadrupled to 100…

May 11, 2024

Sources

Last Thursday, Exxon completed its $60 billion acquisition of Pioneer Natural Resources, thereby becoming the largest shale oil producer in the Permian basin. The FTC has approved the merger on the condition that Pioneer CEO Scott Sheffield be banned from joining Exxon’s board due to alleged collusive…

May 4, 2024

Sources

In the past month, students have occupied 142 universities across the world to demand an academic boycott and divestment from companies and institutions that profit from the Israeli occupation of Palestine. More than 2,000 protesters have been arrested across US campuses. 

April 27, 2024

Sources

On Wednesday, Prabowo Subtiano was officially declared the winner of Indonesia’s 2024 election. The former defense minister has promised to continue the legacy of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, with an agenda that includes industrial downstreaming, infrastructure development, and “good neighbor” policies with both the US and China.

April 20, 2024

Sources

On April 11, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida attended the first trilateral summit between Japan, the United States, and the Philippines. Kishida promised to double Japan’s defense outlay to 2% of GDP by 2027, making its military budget the world’s third largest, behind only the United States and China.

April 18, 2024

Analysis

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…

April 17, 2024

Analysis

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…

April 13, 2024

Sources

Last week, the EPA announced eight awardees who will receive funding under the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF), a $27 billion financing program established in the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. The GGRF aims to bring private investment toward low- to zero-emission projects in communities…

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Series are collections of works published by Phenomenal World on a single subject or area of research. Series are commissioned to analyze particular issues or historical moments, and are either ongoing projects or collected as one-time volumes.

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