Economic Research Forum (ERF)

Justin Lin

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Justin Lin
Peking University, China

Justin Yifu Lin is the Director of Center for New Structural Economics, Peking University. His research focuses on topics related to Economic Development. His obtained PhD in Economics from University of Chicago.

Content by this Author

Transition lessons from China for MENA development

How can developing economies escape from the trap of middle- or low-income status in which the majority has been for decades? Drawing lessons from the experiences of China, this column argues that an economically successful country must have the market as its foundation and on top of that the state playing an active, facilitating role.

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Why the West got rich and the Middle East did not

Today’s rulers of the three largest Middle Eastern economies all look to religious authorities as a key source of legitimacy. Drawing on a broad sweep of historical analysis, this column explores what this might mean for the region’s economic future. One notable danger is that the types of people who would push for policies that promote long-run growth are excluded from the political bargaining table.

Why Turkish growth ended

Following a period of rapid economic growth, the Turkish economy has slowed significantly since 2007. This column argues that these economic ups and downs reflect institutional improvements in the aftermath of the country’s 2001 financial crisis, followed by an ominous slide in the quality of these economic and political institutions.

Implications of the current low oil prices for MENA countries

The current low oil price environment, in part driven by the US shale oil revolution, has important macroeconomic implications for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This column reports research evidence on its likely impact on both oil-exporting and oil-importing countries in the region.

Prospects for development with democracy in the Arab world

What are the prospects for democracy in the Arab world? This column expresses the hope that as conflict-afflicted countries embark on their programmes of economic reconstruction, autocratic institutions will not be re-established under the pretext of the need for a speedy and steady recovery. The optimal path of development necessarily includes robust growth, equity as well as democracy.

An agenda for reducing income inequality in the Arab countries

What can be done to reduce income inequality in Arab countries? This column explores issues of measurement as well as potential policy measures. It concludes by calling for a new multipurpose pan-Arab survey that would allow for an evidence-based decision-making process on the impact of proposed policies on poverty and inequality.

The United Arab Emirates’ dilemma

As energy-producing economies strive to reduce their reliance on oil revenues, they must strike a balance between the competing demands of fiscal sustainability and steady growth of the non-energy sector. This column outlines how the United Arab Emirates is addressing this challenge.

Oil exporters’ responses to the US fracking boom

What are the implications of low oil prices for the economic and political stability of Arab oil-exporting countries such as Saudi Arabia? This column explores the impact of the US fracking boom on Arab oil revenues – and how policy-makers in these countries should respond.

Freedom for women is crucial for economic progress in MENA

The Middle East was once the cradle of civilisation: can it prosper once again? Looking back at lessons from the European Enlightenment, this column argues that if the region wants to advance economically, it needs to advance in terms of its treatment of women. Female agency is central to understanding the West’s technological leadership of the past two centuries.

It’s time to stop the civil war in Syria

Since 2011, the conflict in Syria has created more refugees and more internally displaced persons than anywhere else in the world. This column suggests that the international community can no longer afford simply to accept the growing costs of civil wars like Syria’s and should intervene to end them and promote reconstruction.

Transition lessons from China for MENA development

How can developing economies escape from the trap of middle- or low-income status in which the majority has been for decades? Drawing lessons from the experiences of China, this column argues that an economically successful country must have the market as its foundation and on top of that the state playing an active, facilitating role.