Though governments in the Middle East increasingly support the idea that innovation and entrepreneurship are essential to transforming their economies, Wharton's Karl Ulrich and Bulent Gultekin say that without institutions such as incubators and business-friendly policies, innovation culture cannot take root. Quality of life is also essential, they add, noting that Dubai's ability to attract people and capital stands as a successful regional model.
Published: May 14, 2013 Hardly Fragile: Tunisian Glass Artist's Effort Displays Women's Strength
Sadika Keskes is credited with reviving the art of glass-blowing in Tunisia and breathing innovation into the field over the past few decades. Following Tunisia's political revolution, she foresees new frontiers for creative expression and avenues for artists to help rebuild their country. Through "Women, Show Your Muscles," an artisanal initiative in the economically strained interior of the country, Keskes hopes to guide fellow female artists and fledgling entrepreneurs to self-sufficiency.
Published: May 14, 2013 The Economics of China's Pollution Problem
Earlier this year, major cities throughout China experienced record-breaking levels of pollution, increasing the pressure on the government and industry to take steps to improve air quality in the nation. But it's difficult to pinpoint the exact economic costs of pollution in China -- and just as hard to put a dollar figure on the economic benefits or losses of taking significant action to clean it up.
Published: April 16, 2013 To Arab States Seeking Stability, a Suggestion to Foster Private Business
Exactly why the Arab Spring revolutions took place when they did remains a mystery, says development economist Tillman Brück, who also leads the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. But Middle Eastern countries grappling with the aftereffects of civil unrest should consider creating better environments for true enterprise and private business to flourish if they really want stability, Brück tells Arabic Knowledge@Wharton.
Published: April 02, 2013 Will Resource Nationalism Spoil Brazil's Big Oil Future?
The announcement in 2007 that oil company Petrobras had made a giant oil find off Brazil's southeast coast was a reason for euphoria in South America's biggest country. But that mood of euphoria has long since faded. The so-called Tupi find has started production, but Petrobras is struggling to meet its targets, and raising the money required to develop the find has made it the most indebted company in the world. Much of the blame for the delay in development has been focused on recent regulatory changes, and critics say that a resurgence of resource nationalism could prevent Brazil from ever maximizing its oil resources.
Published: April 02, 2013 Amid the Crisis, One Jordanian Advocate Fights for Syria's Dispossessed
As Syria's civil conflict sends thousands of refugees into neighboring Jordan, one advocate there works to ensure they still have rights. Samar Muhareb is the director of Arab Renaissance in Democracy and Development - Legal Aid. She tells Arabic Knowledge@Wharton how she has relied on her business training and utilized corporate social responsibility measures to address humanitarian concerns raised by the influx of civilians escaping war across the border.
Published: March 19, 2013 What Will China's Likely Carbon Tax Mean?
China will soon introduce a carbon tax as well as other levies aimed at protecting the environment, according to the finance ministry's head of taxes, Jia Chen. What will these changes mean for businesses inside -- and outside -- of China? In an interview with China Knowledge@Wharton, Erwann Michel-Kerjan, managing director of Wharton's Risk Management and Decision Processes Center, offered some analysis. Michel-Kerjan also talked about recent U.S. measures to protect the environment and developments in the field of solar energy.
Published: March 19, 2013 Iran Sanctions: Why U.S. Authorities Are Winning Billions from Banks
Since 2012, the U.S. has aggressively pursued penalties against financial institutions found to be doing business with Iran and other blacklisted nations. The stance is the result of a shift in priorities and particular changes in the way U.S. authorities are interpreting laws, say international legal experts. Banks and other financial firms have to be sure they are in compliance, they note, as "any transaction that touches the U.S. can trigger prosecution."
Published: March 05, 2013 Emerging Economies to Surge, but Deliver Only Modest Wealth for Most
The U.S. and European economies have traditionally shaped the world's economic landscape, but emerging economies will see a shift in market power towards their favor in the upcoming decades, says Asa Johansson, senior economist for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Johansson tells Arabic Knowledge@Wharton that while they will develop faster, these economies will still lag behind Western countries when it comes to individual wealth and quality of life. (Article with video)
Published: February 19, 2013 Brazilian Infrastructure: An End to the Log Jam?
The difficulties encountered in getting ready for two global sporting events -- the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics -- may carry useful lessons for a series of vast infrastructure projects the Brazilian government has announced to improve logistics in the country. New and upgraded roads, railways, ports and airports are all on the government's agenda. Inertia and practical issues have dogged Brazil's infrastructure initiatives in the past, but a new twist is an emphasis on private sector financing and an openness to foreign investment. Could projects really take off this time around?
Published: February 05, 2013