Archive for May 10th, 2011

How China is improving its scientific capabilities?

May 10, 2011

Reinhilde Veugelers of Bruegel has this nice paper on the topic. She discusses the growing China power from an EU angle.

She says the science world is moving towards a G-2 system with US and China as the two members. EU needs to work and catch up:

Both the European Union and the United States must adapt to the scientific surge from China and other emerging nations. In the US, decision makers fear that their open model for building scientific power, based to a great extent on recruiting talent from abroad, has passed its peak. But for the moment the US-China connection is still strong, growing, virtuous and mutually beneficial. In fact, the emerging multipolar science world looks set to be dominated by a US-China G2. With its more inward-looking perspective, the EU needs to do more than focus on internal integration. The European Research Area programme provides the framework for a European policy agenda, but this should place much greater and more urgent emphasis on building excellence and openness to researchers and their institutions from outside the EU.

Some aspects of China’s surge. So far it is mainly in the volumes game but is catching up on quality as well: 

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When Smaller Menus are Better: Importance of Menu Setter

May 10, 2011

Choice is central to economics and menus become the natural companion for such research. Menus contain choices and economists are now interested in menu design and available choices. Earlier, it was believed more is better for choices and hence larger the menu better. Now with behavioral economics research we know more choices does not really mean better. There is a diminishing return after a threshold of choices and any more additions leads to lesser utility.

David Goldreich and Hanna Halaburda write this paper showing another aspect. They say what also matters is quality of menu setters. A good menu setter offers lesser choices and a better menu. The paper says:

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Reviewing RBI’s monetary policy and financial stability framework

May 10, 2011

RBI Governor D Subbarao gives a nice overview of various functions conducted by RBI. The speech is remarkably clear and I am yet to see a RBI official talking so clearly on relations of RBI with the government. Again, he is excellent bringing many ideas to the table for discussion.

He calls RBI a full service central bank managing many activities along with monetary policy.

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