» Archive for: March, 2013


Countries are heterogeneous both internally and externally in many ways, as is widely accepted in the policy arena. The booming literature on firm heterogeneity remains under-developed regarding the degree of firm heterogeneity in developing countries, and the relationship between firm heterogeneity and development. The introduction to the special issue sketches what we know today, discusses recent contributions, and calls for further research in this area.

Comparative analyses cover Argentina, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, Ghana, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, Venezuela, Vietnam and Zambia.

PhD Blogging

Category: PhD

18 Mar 2013

Internet Bloggin can be a powerful tool to convey reflections, share ideas and, according to my own experience, help undertake a fruitful PhD supervision.

In my case being a graduate student at the ISS, this mean has shown to be useful to face multiple challenges regarding my PhD research. For instance The Faculty motivates us to debate not only about theoretical and methodological issues, but also to question our ontological standpoints and, hence, reflect them upon the epistemology behind our research question. This implies not only lots of reading, but also to cover different knowledge grounds and to store an important amount of bibliography. That is why I have created by blog: http://jdparra84.wordpress.com. Both of my promotors, Dr. Mansoob Murshed and Dr. Peter van Bergeijk, agree that this personal website has the capability of positively influencing our communication, help them keep record of what I am reading and, furthermore, provide me virtual feedback through the blog’s site.

Additional advantages of this virtual tool could also include keeping a fluent conversation with a supervisor with a tight travelling agenda and also opening the possibility to receive feedback from colleagues and others members of the staff. In the end, our ideas need daily revision.

Juan David Parra is Colombian graduate student at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS). He holds an MA in Economics and a BA in Governance. His current research is focussed on the Political Economy Education in his country. 

15 months of courses and research, graduation on 14th December 2012, one week to pack and a flight back home. The MA is over BUT the experience as ECD student at ISS continues to be a platform for knowledge and development of own aspirations!

After the good result in the RP, knowing my desire to pursue the academic career, both Arjun and Peter suggested me to develop the work done for publication and send it to the CSAE conference for presentation. So I started to work on the paper with a different perspective: “let’s get something out of it!”. I asked Arjun to get involved and I was offered by Staff Group 1 the support for a qualitative work to back the empirical analysis in the paper. Writing with this new perspective is demanding: everything has to be theoretically and empirically sound because the depth of the analysis in a publishable article in economics has to be the outmost. But the passion for research and the possibility to work and learn again with SG1 gave me the incentives to go on!
I have been accepted to the conference and, once back, I will work on comments and further developments of the article… the glass is always half full if you are enthusiastic about what you do and you are given the opportunity to grow in such a stimulating environment as SG1 and ISS are!
Sara Lazzaroni, ECD MA student 2011-12, has concluded her MA with a research paper titled “Weather variability and food consumption: Evidence from Uganda.” The paper has been marked with distinction and awarded the Professor Hans Opschoor Prize for the best research paper of the Economics of Development specialization of the MA Development Studies at ISS. After the MA Sara has continued working on the RP under the supervision of Prof. Arjun Bedi to develop it for publication purposes. The paper has been accepted at the conference “Economic Development in Africa” 17th-19th March 2013 at the Centre for the Study of the African Economies, St. Catherine’s college, Oxford (UK) where she will present the latest findings. Sara’s research is supported by Staff Group 1 (Economics of Development) and her MA thesis at ISS on which the work is based was supervised by Proff. Arjun Bedi and Peter van Bergeijk.

Peter van Bergeijk gave a presentation at the annual conference of the AIV, the Dutch advisory council in international security. His presentation dealt with the public good aspect of international economic governance and with the often forgotten plight of the Least Developed Countries

Get the presentation Two tales of global financial governance

Annual report

Category: research

10 Mar 2013

In the summer of 2012, SG1 developed a new research program titled Economics of Development and Emerging Markets. The aim was to organize and to provide an impetus to existing research carried out within the staff group as well as research of non-SG1 members whose work fell within the ambit of the new research programme. For various reasons, the programme was only formally launched in January 2013 and for the latter half of 2012 the SG and RP have worked next to each other. The research programme is annexed to this report.

In order to ensure continuity and comparabilty in reporting with a view to the ongoing quality assessments of research output at ISS, this annual report also covers the research output of non-SG1 members that helped to developed and joined EDEM.Importantly the work of the PhD students has also been integrated in this report.

Download the Combined SG1 / EDEM annual report 2012 here


International Institute of Social Studies

Economics of Development (ECD) is a Major in the MA in Development Studies. This blog provides a platform for discussion for researchers, students and others interested in this field of studies. The blog is administered by the ECD teaching team.