News Archive

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Air Pollution & Migration: Exploiting a Natural Experiment from the Czech Republic

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Working Paper
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This paper from Štěpán Mikula (Masaryk University) and Mariola Pytliková (EconPol Europe, CERGE-EI) examines causal effects of air pollution on migration by exploiting a unique natural experiment of desulfurization of power plants in the region of North Bohemia in the Czech Republic after the fall of communism in 1989. They find that anti-emigration policies had no impact on emigration decisions, but the effect of air pollution on emigration tended to be stronger in municipalities with weaker social capital and in municipalities less equipped with man-made amenities.

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Rotterdam skyline

Markups in a Dual Labor Market: The Case of the Netherlands

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Working Paper
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An expanding body of research finds a sharp increase in the average markups in the US and Europe, driven by firms located at the top of the markup distribution; other studies find that markups in the US and Europe have increased only moderately or even remained stable. These differing results have triggered a discussion on methodology, a key issue being the choice of the free input in the production function approach.

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How Important are Local Knowledge Spillovers of Public R&D and What Drives Them?

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Working Paper
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There is a clear consensus that stimulating firm R&D is welfare-increasing due to positive externalities and uncertainty, but the question about the most efficient way to do so is still open to debate: this paper from Leonie Koch (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich) and Martin Simmler (EconPol Europe, Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation) analyzes the magnitude of local knowledge spillovers of public R&D in Germany and its determinants using patent application data.

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Taxation of Digital Platforms

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Working Paper
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An analysis of the proposals and international implications around taxing digital platforms such as Facebook and Google concludes that the European Commission’s proposed digital services tax (DST) addresses the concerns shared by policy makers: but, says author Marko Köthenbürger (EconPol Europe, ETH Zurich), there should be a more stringent definition of the digital platforms that are subjected to such a tax.

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European Central Bank Frankfurt

Green Government Debt for the ‘Green Deal’?

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EconPol Opinion
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The ‘Green Deal’ in its objective is highly ambitious and will absorb substantive financial resources, so it is not surprising that the potential role of higher public debt is being discussed: the European Central Bank is increasingly requested to provide green finance through its asset purchase programmes and similar suggestions are being made in national debates. But does an ambitious climate policy really provide compelling arguments for higher public debt?

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