Feature Service Articles
Latest Feature Service Article
Article at a glance
- This article summarizes the main barriers to entry and growth as experienced by entrepreneurs and business owners in Egypt and Tunisia, and looks at regional differences within each country, differences between formal and informal enterprises, and differences by gender of business owners.
- Top barriers to growth in 2013 were reported to be political instability and public disorder, administrative inefficiency, and restrained access to finance. Even among formal businesses, informal mechanisms often compensate for the absence of effective state institutions and the rule of law.
- Administrative reforms and deeper investments in infrastructure and human capital are needed to build the business-friendly ecosystem needed to generate jobs, grow the economy, and create opportunities for all citizens
It has been almost 20 years since the Philippines overthrew a dictatorship and reestablished democracy. The first few years of that transition were understandably painful. But after a promising first decade, the country has been lurching from one crisis to another. Arguably, the reasons for the seemingly unending crisis have been largely homegrown – they revolve around political will. In other words, they have been mainly about public governance at the national level.
Recognizing the problems democracy in the Philippines was facing, the Institute for Solidarity in Asia (ISA) designed and implemented a program that brings together public officials and civil society groups to improve governance mechanisms on the local level. City mayors participating in the program work with civil society groups to identify priorities, design solutions, and implement concrete programs to improve the economic and social standing of their cities. In the process, they also improve political institutions by strengthening participatory mechanisms. The program has been a success and continues to expand into an increasing number of cities throughout the country.Read more...
Governance has become a buzzword in the development community, yet many continue to lack a clear understanding of the principle. In its essence, governance is an all-encompassing system that includes not only economic management, administrative procedures, and political factors, but is also subject to the influence of cultural and even religious factors.
Research and anecdotal evidence reveal that the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is on the weak side with regard to institutional and regulatory frameworks and good governance practices. This clearly has had a negative impact on the region’s ability to better mobilize available resources and solidify sustainable development, an issue of crucial importance in light of the demographic pressures and the need to create employment opportunities for the millions of entrants to the labor market every year. The institutional and regulatory frameworks in the region are generally polarized between excessive regulation and red tape, on one side, and vague and inadequate rules and regulations on the other. The consequence of this is particularly harmful to the poor segments of the society.Read more...
At the recent IV Summit of the Americas, 34 Heads of State and Government of the Americas gathered in Argentina to find solutions for some of the region’s most pressing challenges – to fight poverty and improve democratic governance. No one takes the challenges of job creation, competitiveness, and poverty reduction more seriously than the hemisphere’s business community. However, in order for the private sector to create the jobs necessary to developing the economy, the government must step in and implement certain policy reforms. Economic growth will not occur without free labor markets, reduced barriers to entrepreneurship, and open trade policies.
Business must work with governments to identify steps they can take, individually or jointly, to facilitate job creation, combat poverty, and enhance competitiveness — and this work must begin today. It is only through smart government reforms that the nations of the Americas will experience the low unemployment levels, falling poverty rates, and income gains that they have been working toward for years.Read more...
The Rose Revolution in Georgia was quickly hailed in the West as a democratic success story, inspiring a series of other “people-powered revolutions,” such as the ones in Ukraine, Lebanon, and Kyrgyzstan.
However, the euphoria surrounding the revolution has given way to the reality that democratic reforms are not progressing as they should. President Saakashvili has had a number of important successes, including police reform and development of market-based solutions to the social protection system. However, there have also been significant problems, including censorship in the media, constitutional changes that reduced the powers of the legislature and the judiciary, and government pressure on business. In many respects, Georgia is at a crossroads between a liberal democracy and the Russian model of so-called “managed democracy.”Read more...
In his interview with Alquds Daily Newspaper, CIPE Executive Director John D. Sullivan discusses issues of institutional governance and evaluates the path to economic recovery in Palestine. In strong economies, the private sector is the engine of economic growth, but in Palestine, various obstacles limit its ability to move the economy forward. In many cases, the business community is unable to assume a leadership role because the laws governing associations inhibit business organizations from becoming the “broad voice of Palestinian businesspeople.” In addition, other obstacles to economic recovery of the country include transportation restrictions, transaction costs, barriers to export, and lack of access to credit. These are the issues that must be resolved so that private enterprise in Palestine can become the driving force behind economic recovery.Read more...
- Democratic Governance
- Access to Information
- Combating Corruption
- Business Association Development
- Corporate Governance
- Legal & Regulatory Reform
- Informal Sector & Property Rights
- Corporate Citizenship (CSR)
- South Asia
- Middle East & North Africa
- Latin America & the Caribbean
Call for Items
CIPE welcomes articles submitted by readers. Most articles run between 3-7 pages (1000-3000 words), but all submissions relevant to CIPE's mission of building accountable, democratic institutions through market-oriented reform will be considered based on merit. Economic Reform Feature Service articles are primarily geared toward an international, non-academic community of businesspeople, economic reformers, and policy-makers. Specific policy recommendations and articles based on direct experience are encouraged. In addition to articles, we are willing to adapt suitable lectures, speeches, research notes, and academic papers.
Articles should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.