Category Archives: Governance

Could Auckland Have a Greek Crisis?

Submitted to ‘New Zealand Herald’ but mot published. Keywords: Governance; Macroeconomics & Money; Could New Zealand have a financial crisis like the current Greek one? Anything is possible but the central government has a formidable series of institutional arrangements to reduce the probability of it happening together with prudently committed ministers of finance. History reminds…
Continue reading this entry »

Auckland Council’s Draft Long-term Plan 2012-2022:

ASSESSING THE FINANCIAL PROJECTIONS Paper prepared for Land Solutions Ltd for submission to the  Auckland Council Keywords: Governance; Summary Conclusions and Recommendations S1:       Were I an Auckland councillor or a citizen of Auckland I would be reluctant to agree to the financial components of the Draft Plan. S2:       The Draft Plan is misleading for the…
Continue reading this entry »

Infrastructure Problems in New Zealand

Listener: 17 September, 2011. Keywords: Environment & Resources;  Governance; The cinema may give a good idea about the sewers of Paris and Vienna, but I have little idea what goes on underneath the city in which I live. I just pull the plug or chain and the waste magically disappears. For the citizens of Christchurch,…
Continue reading this entry »

Now Let Me Give You the Results Of an Equally Valid Survey ….

Letter to The Dominion-Post, 10 June, 2011. Keywords: Governance; Lacking the impetus to chase hard stories, the ‘Dominion-Post’ ran a survey of government departments last Tuesday based on the rankings of an arbitrary panel. At the bottom was the Ministry of Culture and Heritage scoring 3.18/7. This reflected that the panel did not contain the…
Continue reading this entry »

Who Wants Asset Sales?

Those who favour privatisation can be divided into four camps … Listener: 5 March, 2011. Keywords: Business & Finance; Governance; Macroeconomics & Money; Ideologues who hate the Government succeeding and want to scale it back, even if it is costly, as was privatising the Telecom monopoly. They would do the same to the three electricity…
Continue reading this entry »

Reserve Bank to the Rescue

The crew worked extremely hard to keep the good ship New Zealand afloat. Listener: 18 September, 2010. Keywords: Governance; Macroeconomics & Money; Political Economy & History; When Alan Bollard transferred from the position of secretary of the Treasury to that of the governor of the Reserve Bank, a good friend announced it was “more pay…
Continue reading this entry »

Another Redisorganisation

Why is the Government proposing public-sector mergers for so little apparent benefit? Listener: 1 May, 2010. Keywords: Governance; At a certain point in the political cycle, governments start following officials’ agendas that make no political sense but meet some administrative need. All policy changes upset the people whose interests are harmed. These changes often reflect…
Continue reading this entry »

Understanding the Fiscal Imperatives

Paper for Towards a Value Driven Public Sector Summit, 15 July, 2009.   Keywords: Macroeconomics & Money; Regulation & Taxation; Social Policy;   Before talking about the fiscal imperatives in the narrow sense, I want to make a couple of general remarks about the rhetoric of policy. .   The first is that the need…
Continue reading this entry »

The Future Of Auckland.

Presentation to Auckland Regional Council: 29 October. 2008. Keywords: Globalisation & Trade; Governance; Growth & Innovation; Aucklanders sometimes talk about wanting to have a ‘world class city’. Since any city can be world class in its class, that is not a very ambitious goal. The issue is in which class does Auckland want to be?…
Continue reading this entry »

Submission to the Royal Commission on Auckland Governance

23 April, 2008   Keywords: Globalisation & Trade; Governance;   Introduction   The purpose of this note is to bring together various writings of mine about some analytic tools, which the Royal Commission on Auckland Governance may find helpful. There are no specific recommendations other than I commend the use of these tools were relevant….
Continue reading this entry »

Place Your Votes

Now is your chance to choose strong local governance. Listener: 6 October, 2007. Keywords: Governance; Political Economy & History; Why are you voting in this month’s local body elections? I’m voting because I believe in the principle of “subsidiarity”, that decisions should be taken at the lowest effective level. That is why I often support…
Continue reading this entry »

Shaping the Way We Play: an Economist’s View

The 11th Annual Public Sector Finance Forum. 11 September, 2007     Keywords: Governance; Regulation & Taxation; Statistics;    In my paper yesterday, I argued that we too frequently misuse data for rhetorical and political purposes. Today’s paper is an extension of that theme, but it focuses on a less conscious process, while providing an…
Continue reading this entry »

Decommercialising Advanced Studies

Keywords:  Education;  Governance; Growth & Innovation;   The judges of a singing contest, dissatisfied with the first diva, awarded the prize to the second without having heard her. The favouring of commercialisation in the late 1980s and early 1990s had a similar empirical base. We have now heard the second diva, and while she has…
Continue reading this entry »

The Relevance Of Commercialism to Government Agencies

Paper for “Corporate Governance in the Public Sector 2007 Conference”, Wednesday 19 February, Wellington. [1]   Keywords: Governance;   By the 1980s the traditional regulation of New Zealand’s private and public sectors had become increasingly obsolete. The story of the shift to ‘more-market’ and the privatisation of some of the public sector is well known….
Continue reading this entry »

Changing Expectations

MMP has reduced policy extremism, but more consensus politics are needed to solve our big economic questions   Listener: 21 October, 2006.   Keywords: Environment & Resources; Governance;  The rise in personality politics is an unexpected consequence of MMP. Certainly there are other factors, including a change in the US political debate (recall the attacks…
Continue reading this entry »

The Future Of the Nation-state in a Globalised World

Presentation to a Leadership New Zealand seminar, 18 May 2006.

Keywords: Globalisation & Trade; Governance;

I am working on a book, The Globalisation of Nations, sponsored by the Marsden Fund. As the title suggests I am concerned with both the process of globalisation and how that affects the nation-state. Today I begin by giving a brief overview of the economics of globalisation, but my main focus will be about its impact on the nation-state.