EconPol Forum

EconPol Forum (formerly CESifo Forum) is a bi-monthly English-language journal to bring economic analysis on topics of worldwide interest along with policy advice to a broad range of policymakers and the public.

In September 2022 the CESifo Forum was restructured into four sections under the new EconPol brand. The first, Policy Debate of the Hour, recognizes the constantly evolving nature of policy challenges, focusing on the most pressing issues of the times. Leading researchers are invited to share their insights and policy conclusions. The Economic Policy and its Impact section assesses economic policies and develops robust evidence for their optimal design and implementation. In the Institutions Across the World section, contributors focus on the key role that institutional design plays in shaping socio-economic outcomes, often by comparing institutions across economic and political systems. Finally, Big Data-Based Economic Insights presents articles that glean economic policy advice from the exploitation of large, complex datasets.

Russia’s “Impressionable Years” and Putin’s Inheritance

INSTITUTIONS ACROSS THE WORLD

Michael Alexeev, William Pyle and Jiaan Wang

Just over three decades ago, a new era appeared to have dawned in Europe: The Cold War had wound down, the Soviet Union’s empire had broken apart, and democratic capitalism stood poised to sweep aside ossified communist systems. This article uses geographic markers in the most recent wave of the Integrated Values Survey to show that, within Russia, the drop in a region’s electoral support for Boris Yeltsin between the presidential elections of 1991 and 1996 strongly predicts its degree of illiberalism in 2017. On balance, where faith in the politician who launched marketization and democratization declined most dramatically is where we continue to observe the greatest skepticism for his liberal project. The pattern laid down in the early 1990s persists.

... Details

Apprenticeship Skills Pay Off on the Labor Market

ECONOMIC POLICY AND ITS IMPACT

Christina Langer, Jakob Peiffer and Simon Wiederhold

Workers’ skills are essential to their success on the labor market. However, the empirical evidence on the economic impact of higher skills is still limited due to how skills are measured. In this article, the authors develop novel measures of workers’ skills that are comprehensive, highly detailed, and directly relevant to the labor market. To this end, they leverage the characteristics of the German apprenticeship system, which offers three main advantages for measuring skills and analyzing their labor market potential.

... Details

Thirty Years of the European Single Market ‒ Achievements and Future Challenges

Stefano Micossi, Giuseppe Bertola, Marek Dabrowski, Mehtap Akgüç and Philippe Pochet, Lucia Quaglia and Amy Verdun, Iulia Siedschlag, Andreas Baur and Lisandra Flach

The 30th anniversary of the European Single Market provides an opportunity to celebrate its successes and review what is yet to be achieved. In the future, the European Single Market will play a decisive role in setting a framework of reliable social standards and common goals. It will ensure Europe’s resilience by helping companies adapt their supply chains to future risks and find new business opportunities. The concrete measures of social policy will be left to the member states.

... Details

The Role of Fiscal Policy Measures in Mitigating the Effects of the Covid-19 Crisis in Germany

ECONOMIC POLICY AND ITS IMPACT

Michael Christl, Silvia De Poli, Tine Hufkens, Andreas Peichl, Mattia Ricci

The Covid-19 pandemic hit Germany hard in 2020. Driven by the need to limit close contact and the resulting strict lockdown measures, economic activity fell sharply. To counter the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the German government introduced several policy measures. While the macroeconomic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is well documented, evidence on the distributional impact on household income at the micro level is more limited. Our analysis shows that German households experienced a loss of over 3 percent of market income in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

... Details

Emigration and Elections: The Role of Emigrants' Missing Votes

INSTITUTIONS ACROSS THE WORLD

Yvonne Giesing, Felicitas Schikora, Geisi Shima

The number of migrants is continuously increasing worldwide. One in 30 people is a migrant, which amounts to 3.6 percent of the world’s population. This article presents the case of Poland, a country with 12.5 percent of its population living abroad. Many of them still have Polish citizenship and thus the right to vote in Poland. It finds that, the large-scale emigration of young and educated voters causes a negative shift in left-wing voting while there is a substantial increase in right-wing voting with higher emigration. More generally, this effect will depend on the selection of migrants and their voting preferences. Based on this, countries might also want to apply different policies to steer the wheel in either direction.

... Details