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informal construction Simon Maina/AFP via Getty Images

The Future of Informality

Featured in this Big Picture
  1. Marty ChenMarty Chen,
  2. Alice SaishaAlice Saisha,
  3. Anuj TannaAnuj Tanna,
  4. Jayati GhoshJayati Ghosh,
  5. Pranab BardhanPranab Bardhan

Informal workers comprise about 60% of the global labor force – and a much larger share in emerging and developing economies. Many of them have made essential contributions during the pandemic, but that is no guarantee of improved rights, benefits, and working conditions once the crisis is over.

  1. ECB Rubicon Yann Schreiber/AFP via Getty Images

    Crossing the Rubicon of Price Stability

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Daniel Gros,
    2. Barry Eichengreen,
    3. Isabelle Mateos y Lago,
    4. Megan Greene,
    5. Jean Pisani-Ferry,
    6. Anita Bhatia

    With inflation subdued for now, central banks are increasingly responding to public pressure to address inequality and climate change. But by venturing into new policy terrain and exposing themselves to accusations of mission creep, they may be jeopardizing their operational independence.

  2. Dhaka test Rehman Asad/NurPhoto via Getty Images

    The Recovery of Women

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. María Fernanda Espinosa,
    2. Helen Clark,
    3. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg,
    4. Parimita Mohanty,
    5. Annette Wallgren,
    6. Palesa Libe

    Among its many harmful effects, the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated long-standing gender inequalities. If leaders are serious about “building back better” and promoting inclusive economies and societies, they must take concrete steps to empower women at home, at work, and in policymaking.

  3. IRS building Pgiam/Getty Images

    The Great American Tax Gambit

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Daron Acemoglu,
    2. José Antonio Ocampo,
    3. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    4. Jayati Ghosh,
    5. Alan J. Auerbach,
    6. Nouriel Roubini,
    7. Michael Heise

    To help finance its massive post-pandemic infrastructure investment package, US President Joe Biden’s administration plans to increase corporate taxes and reduce the scope for profit-shifting by US-based multinationals. Although the proposed tax changes are likely to face opposition from congressional Republicans and big business, are any of the alternatives better?

  4. myanmar explosion Stringer/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

    Myanmar Explodes

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Achim Steiner,
    2. Shashi Tharoor,
    3. Brahma Chellaney,
    4. Thitinan Pongsudhirak,
    5. Lee Jong-Wha,
    6. Yuriko Koike

    After a gradual decade-long democratization process, Myanmar’s military seized power again in February and is waging a ruthless crackdown against unarmed civilian protesters. A major escalation of the ongoing turmoil – civil war is a growing possibility – would have implications far beyond the country’s borders.

  5. light bulb economics phototechno/Getty Images

    Economics Must Build Back Better, Too

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Dani Rodrik,
    2. Arvind Subramanian,
    3. Devesh Kapur,
    4. Lisa D. Cook,
    5. Elmira Bayrasli,
    6. Ricardo Hausmann,
    7. Roman Frydman,
    8. Michael D. Goldberg,
    9. Diane Coyle

    As the world strives to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, economists’ efforts to devise strategies to generate inclusive and sustainable prosperity have taken on greater urgency. But those efforts will not succeed unless the profession itself becomes more inclusive – in terms of gender, ethnicity, national origin, and the intellectual assumptions and methods it employs.

  6. recovery mission Images

    Mission: Recovery

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Michael Spence,
    2. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    3. Jayati Ghosh,
    4. William R. Rhodes,
    5. Stuart P.M. Mackintosh,
    6. Mohamed A. El-Erian,
    7. Mariana Mazzucato,
    8. Laurie Macfarlane,
    9. George Dibb

    Many fear that sharp differences in the speed of vaccine rollouts and the scale of stimulus measures will result in a K-shaped global economic recovery, with much of the developed world booming while poorer countries continue to struggle. But if policymakers are not careful, advanced economies also could experience highly uneven post-pandemic growth.

  7. EU slow vaccine FrankyDeMeyer/Getty Images

    Vaccine Strains

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Hans-Werner Sinn,
    2. Melvyn B. Krauss,
    3. Ngaire Woods,
    4. Oyeronke Oyebanji,
    5. Shashi Tharoor,
    6. Erik Berglöf,
    7. Daron Acemoglu

    The European Union’s sluggish COVID-19 vaccination efforts are currently dominating the headlines and undermining confidence in the bloc. But, overall, rich countries remain well ahead of the developing world in the global scramble for supplies – and the longer this imbalance persists, the greater the risk that new coronavirus variants will emerge that can again threaten the world.

  8. bitcoin beyond metamorworks/Getty Images

    Bitcoin and Beyond

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Kenneth Rogoff,
    2. Barry Eichengreen,
    3. Nouriel Roubini,
    4. Jim O'Neill,
    5. Willem H. Buiter,
    6. Brian Armstrong,
    7. Katharina Pistor,
    8. Co-Pierre Georg

    The COVID-19 pandemic may be speeding the demise of cash, but it seems premature to declare digital money a winner in the current economic crisis. Many regard privately issued cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin as dangerously volatile, while central bank digital currencies could impose their own unexpected costs and risks on the global monetary system.

  9. bp_inflation_20th Century FoxArchive PhotosGetty Images_young frankenstein it's alive 20th Century Fox/Archive Photos/Getty Images

    Is Inflation Alive?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Axel A. Weber,
    2. Kenneth Rogoff,
    3. Robert J. Barro,
    4. J. Bradford DeLong,
    5. Claudia Sahm,
    6. Elmira Bayrasli,
    7. Harold James,
    8. Markus Brunnermeier,
    9. Jean-Pierre Landau

    Huge fiscal and monetary stimulus programs have sparked a growing debate about whether advanced economies may sooner or later experience the sort of rapid price growth last seen a generation ago. While stimulus advocates point to current weak demand and the public’s deeply ingrained low-inflation expectations, anxious hawks fear that a new and dangerous global inflationary consensus may be taking hold.

  10. Dollar printer Getty Images

    America’s Stimulus Debate

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    2. James K. Galbraith,
    3. Daron Acemoglu,
    4. Koichi Hamada,
    5. Shang-Jin Wei,
    6. George P. Shultz,
    7. John F. Cogan,
    8. John B. Taylor,
    9. Robert Skidelsky

    Many would regard the middle of a pandemic-induced economic crisis as the wrong time to sound the alarm about the potential dangers of profligate government spending. But as US President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion economic rescue plan works its way through Congress, it is not only Republicans who are asking whether providing too much fiscal stimulus could be just as risky as delivering too little.

  11. Russia arrest Mihail Siergiejevicz/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

    How Secure is Putin?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Alexei Navalny,
    2. Tikhon Dzyadko,
    3. Sławomir Sierakowski,
    4. Andrei Kolesnikov,
    5. Sergei Guriev,
    6. Nina L. Khrushcheva,
    7. Ana Palacio,
    8. Mark Leonard

    Although the arrest and hasty imprisonment of opposition leader Alexei Navalny triggered Russia’s biggest wave of protests in years, President Vladimir Putin’s regime appears to be in little danger for now. But a stagnant economy, mounting anger at high-level corruption, and restless political elites could sooner or later threaten Putin’s seemingly well-entrenched regime.

  1. benami175_ANAS BABAAFP via Getty Images_bomb ANAS BABA/AFP via Getty Images

    The End of Israel’s Illusion

    Shlomo Ben-Ami

    The prevailing consensus among Israelis that Palestinian nationalism had been defeated – and thus that a political solution to the conflict was no longer necessary – lies in tatters. And even as the violence escalates, it has become clear to both sides that the era of glorious wars and victories is over.

    explains why the sudden eruption of Palestinian resistance caught a complacent nation off guard.
  2. informal construction Simon Maina/AFP via Getty Images

    The Future of Informality

    Informal workers comprise about 60% of the global labor force – and a much larger share in emerging and developing economies. Many of them have made essential contributions during the pandemic, but that is no guarantee of improved rights, benefits, and working conditions once the crisis is over.


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