July 26, 2018
12:00 - 1:00 PM
A Grand Alliance to Save Our Public Postal Service
Russell Senate Office Building SR-385
The future of the public Postal Service is at the center of a swirling national debate. The White House is questioning its deals with Amazon. A June 2018 White House OMB report, Delivering Government Solutions in the 21st Century, draws the conclusion that privatization of the Postal Service is the only way forward. A 2006 congressionally-manufactured USPS “crisis” imposed an unfair crushing financial mandate on the Postal Service that no other government agency or private company is forced to bear.
Yet the U.S. Postal Service, with zero tax dollars, delivers nearly 500 million pieces of mail every day to 157 million addresses no matter who customers are or where they live. It is the core of the $1.4 trillion U.S. mailing industry that employs 7.5 million people.
The Postal Service has come a long way since July 26, 1775, when the Second Continental Congress established the Post Office and named Benjamin Franklin the first Postmaster General. And in the age of e-commerce, it is more relevant than ever.
In recognition of Postal Heritage Day, experts took part in a discussion of postal service finances, why privatization is the wrong approach, and the recently-introduced bi-partisan H. Res. 993 which expresses “the sense of the House of Representatives that Congress should take all appropriate measures to ensure that the United States Postal Service remains an independent establishment of the Federal Government and is not subject to privatization.”
* Brian Renfroe, Executive Vice President, National Association of Letter Carriers, AFL-CIO
* Alan Barber, Director of Domestic Policy, Center for Economic and Policy Research
* Art Sackler, Manager, Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service
* Ashley Poling, Senior Policy Counsel, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND)
* House Resolution 993 leads
July 20, 2018
2:30 - 4:15 PM (GMT-3)
Young Scholars Initiative
Institute for New Economic Thinking
Universidad de Buenos Aires
Facultad de Ciencias Económicas,
Av. Córdoba 2122, Buenos Aires
CEPR Research Associate Lara Merling participated in a roundtable discussion on "Finance, Law and Economics: Sovereign Debt Sustainability" as part of the Young Scholars Initiative Latin America Convening. Lara presented her paper, "Puerto Rico’s Peculiar Case: Bankruptcy of an Unincorporated Territory."
Other presenters included:
Cássio Alves: "Sustainability of Brazilian public debt: An Empirical Analysis."
Juan Facundo Carcedo: "States and International Finance Institutions: an approach to the relation between Argentina and the World Bank in the 21st century."
Moderators: Arturo O'Connell and Cecilia Nahón
For more information, visit the event schedule.
June 20, 2018
4:00 - 6:00 PM
Aspen Institute's Future of Work Initiative
Russell Senate Office Building (Room 385)
2 Constitution Ave. NE
How has work changed in the last decade?
According to the recently released 2017 Contingent Worker Supplement (CWS), the number of Americans relying on alternative work arrangements for their main job has held steady since 2005 – the last time these numbers were collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Given the extensive economic and technological change we have seen over the past 13 years, what can we learn from these new numbers?
The Aspen Institute's Future of Work Initiative hosted a briefing to highlight and discuss the CWS findings and their implications on June 20. The CWS measures how many workers are in contingent and alternative work arrangements, including independent work, temp-agency work, and contract-firm work – arrangements that are sometimes referred to as the "gig economy."
The recent numbers – 10.1 percent of workers are in alternative arrangements as their main job – are informative, but also raise many questions and highlight the need for more and better data collection. We lack information on supplemental work, how people find their jobs, and how companies structure employment – information necessary in order to develop policies that address the challenges of today’s workers.
CEPR Co-Director Eileen Appelbaum participated in the briefing. For more information, visit the event site.
June 13, 2018
12:00 P.M. - 1:00 P.M.
Young Scholars Initiative
As an unincorporated territory of the US, Puerto Rico’s ongoing bankruptcy process has been designed by US Congress through special legislation, which put a Federal Oversight and Management Board in charge of the main policy decisions. The board is in charge of approving a Fiscal Plan – which sets the policy agenda for all fiscal policy decisions for the island. Prior to the storm, the board had certified a 10-year austerity plan that most economists believed was unrealistic and bound to fail. This plan was revisited in the aftermath of the storm. However, the board has chosen to double down on austerity measures and reforms that do not address the roots of Puerto Rico’s crisis or take into account the particularities of Puerto Rico’s economy and political status.
This presentation covered the background of Puerto Rico’s fiscal crisis, its decade-long recession and inability to respond to it. In this context, it becomes clear that the measures proposed by the oversight board are sure to harm the most vulnerable citizens of Puerto Rico, without a clear plan on how to fix the economy. The webinar discussed the particularities of Puerto Rico’s status, which undoubtedly played a central role in the debt crisis. Puerto Ricans are US citizens, yet they cannot vote while on the island, have no representation in US Congress, and do not enjoy some of the same benefits citizens residing on the mainland have. While there is no easy solution to the problem, there are some steps to assure that ordinary Puerto Ricans are not punished for this crisis and are not treated as second-class US citizens.
• Lara Merling, research assistant at the Center for Economic and Policy Research
• Amarilys Abreu, organizer, Finance, Law, and Economics working group, Young Scholars Initiative
June 2, 2018
12:00 - 1:50 PM
John Jay College
524 W 59th St, New York, NY 10019
As part of LeftForum 2018, roundtable participants discussed the ongoing crisis in Honduras, with a particular focus on the increasing, and increasingly militarized consolidation of power since the recent installation of Juan Orlando Hernández as dictator following blatant electoral fraud. Today, over 40 people who protested the 2017 fraud are dead and dozens of anti-fraud political prisoners languish, pre-trial, without healthcare, adequate food or access to family members in new, post-coup U.S.-style maximum security prisons that have enriched foreign corporations with no accountability or transparency. International extractive and tourist corporations, in collusion with powerful drug lords, oligarchs and politicians (often the same people) harass and murder activists and journalists with complete impunity. While the 2017 electoral fraud was roundly and internationally condemned, it came as no surprise to Hondurans that the U.S. State Department supported its outcome, just as the Clinton State Department supported the 2009 coup that laid the path for the nation's downward spiral into neoliberal fascism. Similarly unsurprising are the crickets coming from mainstream media regarding U.S.-supported violence in Honduras, compared with depictions of state violence in, for example, Nicaragua and Venezuela. Despite this bleak panorama, Hondurans continue to bravely resist. This panel will provide examples of that resistance on multiple levels, and will discuss strategies for effective solidarity.
Alexander Main, Senior Associate, International Policy, Center for Economic and Policy Research
Rodolfo Pastor, Libre Party of Honduras
For more information, visit the conference site.
June 2, 2018
10:00 - 11:50 AM
John Jay College
524 W 59th St, New York, NY 10019
The left in Brazil faces an unparalleled challenge to rethink its strategies after having the elected president, Dilma Rousseff, ousted in 2016 in a coup d’etat. After been able of build a socialist democratic party and win many elections from local and regional to the presidency of the country for 4 consecutive elections, the PT, born of the struggles of union’s movement in the end of 80’s saw its power destroyed, its leaders prosecuted and imprisoned leaving its activists in a daily challenge to resist and build solidarity. The Brazilian society is on a crossroad as there is little hope for free elections in 2018 after the imprisonment of former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. In spite of increasing repression, Brazilian social movements continue to organize and resist. Huge street mobilizations, the creation of international support groups, land and urban occupations count among the many ways Brazilian activists are now organizing to face the rise of the right veering toward fascism. The independent media and social media play a key role in bringing visibility to the resistance.
As part of LeftForum 2018, the Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee — a collective of Brazilian immigrants and supporters created in February 2016 to denounce the coup détat, organize international resistance and support human rights and social justice in Brazil — shared its experience in organizing grassroots mobilizations in New York.
Maria Luisa Mendonça, The Center for Place, Culture and Politics, CUNY Graduate Center
Alexander Main, Senior Associate, International Policy, Center for Economic and Policy Research
Alessandra Pio, New York University
Aline Piva, Council of Hemispheric Affairs
Myriam Marques, Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee - DDB NY
For more information, visit the conference site.
Université Quisqueya et « 1804 Institute »
Lieu de l’activité:
l’Université Quisqueya à Port au Prince
Devant l’ampleur du phénomène et face à l’intérêt croissant qu’il suscite au sein de la population haïtienne, l’Université Quisqueya et « 1804 Institute » ont décidé d’organiser conjointement sur le campus de l’université , à Port -‐ au -‐ Prince, un Colloque International intitulé « Corruption et Transparence : Mécanismes et Enjeux ». Il se tiendra les 3 et 4 mai 2018. L’idée maîtresse de ce Colloque est de dépasser le cadre normatif et institutionnel de la lutte contre la corruption pour s’intéresser aux méthodes et valeurs que la société dans son ensemble doit mettre en place pour combattre ce fléau. Dans ce contexte, au cours du Colloque, des experts de tous horizons, familiers de la vie sociale haïtienne, tenteront d’apport er un éclairage sur des questions telles que : Quels sont les mécanismes à mettre en place pour combattre la corruption en Haïti ? Faut -‐ il plus de transparence et une meilleure dissémination de l’information ? Faut -‐ il plutôt investir dans une culture de la responsabilité et de l’intégrité ? La lutte contre l’impunité et la mise sur pied d’un code de conduite vont -‐ elles permettre d’atteindre les résultats recherchés? Ou s’agit -‐ il d’un savant dosage entre ces trois voies ?
Jake Johnston de CEPR interviendra lors de l’atelier intitulé “Pratiques de lutte contre la corruption” aux côtés de M. Édouard Paultre, Coordonnateur du Conseil Haïtien des Acteurs Non Étatiques (CONHANE) et de M. Vincent Degert, Ambassadeur, Chef de Délégation de l’Union européenne en Haïti.
April 30, 2018
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
UCLA Center for Social Theory and Comparative History
UCLA, Haines Hall 279
Increasing numbers of analysts, both political economists and journalists, have noted the strong trend in recent years to concentration – the reduction of the number of firms in an ever increasing number of industries. They have remarked on the apparently close relationship between the increase in concentration and the rise of monopoly/oligopoly, which has opened the way in turn for firms to impose rising prices, take higher profits, and enjoy ascending equity values. What lies behind these tendencies? Speakers explored their causes, looking at the place of collaboration between companies in limiting competition and setting prices, and especially the growing part played by the government in protecting firms’ markets through public policy. The astounding level of profits routinely garnered by such firms as Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google is a core feature of today’s economy. Is this understandable merely in terms of their extraordinary technology, or is it actually increasingly attributable to radically increased intellectual property rights, a central feature of still expanding neoliberalism?
Dean Baker, Co-founder of the Center for Economic and Policy Research and author of "Rigged: How Globalization and the Rules of the Modern Economy Were Structured to Make the Rich Richer."
Michael Lind, Professor of Public Policy at the University of Texas in Austin and author of "Land of Promise: An Economic History of the United States" and "The American Way of Strategy: U.S. Foreign Policy and the American Way of Life."
April 20, 2018
9:00 - 10:30 AM
World Bank Group/IMF 2018 Spring Meetings
Bretton Woods Project, CESR and the International Labour Organization
International Monetary Fund HQ2, 03B - 838B
1900 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20431
In 2008, the global financial crisis unleashed a cascade of social, economic and political developments still shaping our world today. After an initial set of counter-cyclical responses to the crisis, a widespread turn towards fiscal austerity has seemingly become the new normal around the world—resulting in what could only be called a lost decade for equality, development and human rights. Ten years on, the growing inequalities resulting from austerity are inspiring outrage and a growing demand for change. The economic nationalism, political populism and fundamentalism which emerged in the wake of austerity pose enormous threats if left un-countered. The almost-daily exposés of tax abuse by multinational companies and high-net wealth individuals contradicts the notion that fiscal adjustments are even necessary in the first place. The international community is re-thinking public financing models to make them more equitable, sustainable and accountable to allow for a new decade of socio-economic development with human rights to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Building on this momentum, this event aimed to bring together a cross-section of civil society, government, ILO and IMF officials to explore the political, economic and social implications of this Age of Austerity. Speakers provided evidence of how fiscal adjustment measures in various countries have impinged on human rights and the fight against economic and gender inequality. They discussed lessons learned in implementing economic and fiscal alternatives to austerity that are sound, and in accordance with the SDGs and internationally agreed conventions and recommendations. Speakers also explored ways in which the IMF can help expand fiscal space in countries facing fiscal stress to prevent the worst impacts of austerity, make progress toward the SDGs and to prevent another Lost Decade.
Isabel Ortiz, Director of Social Protection, International Labor Organization (ILO)
Grazielle David, Policy Advisor, Institute for Socioeconomic Studies (INESC), Brazil
Mark Weisbrot, Co-Director, Center for Economic and Policy Research
Hreinn Pálsson, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Iceland in Washington D.C.
Jeffrey Franks, Director of the IMF Europe Office
Mark Weisbrot - Presentation
April 10, 2018
11:30 AM, Longworth House Office Building 1540-A
3:00 PM, Russell Senate Office Building 188
Experts from Demos, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, and the Center for Economic and Policy Research discussed wealth, debt, and inequality, shared highlights of Demos' recent Everyone's Economy policy briefing book, and educated senior staffers on federal policies aimed at lifting up working people.
Topics explored included:
Debt cycles that trap people in poverty vs. private equity;
Invisibility of poor and working class of color and the widening of the racial wealth gap, especially for black families;
Our “debt for diploma” higher education system;
Impact of tax policy on wealth inequality, child tax credit and immigrant families.
Tamara Draut, Vice President, Policy & Research, Demos
Dr. Algernon Austin, Economist, Demos
Mark Huelsman, Senior Policy Analyst, Demos
Chye-Ching Huang, Deputy Director, Federal Tax Policy, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
Dr. Eileen Appelbaum, Co-Director, Center for Economic and Policy Research
March 20, 2018
10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez
U.S. House of Representatives
Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez hosted a bipartisan discussion on "Puerto Rico, Six Months After Hurricane Maria." The event provided an opportunity for small businesses from Puerto Rico and NGOs on the ground to talk about their relief work immediately after the Hurricane. It also provided a space to discuss relevant policy issues that are having and will continue to have an effect on Puerto Rico. CEPR Co-Director Mark Weisbrot participated by presenting an analysis of the revised fiscal plan.
March 8, 2018
1:00 PM - 5:30 PM
University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the Department of Medical History and Bioethics
750 Highland Ave
Madison, WI 53792
CEPR Senior Economist Dean Baker participated in an afternoon of debate, discussion and presentations with national and local speakers at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine. Dean presented with Elisabeth Rosenthal, MD, on the topic “Are Physicians Paid Too Much?” For more information, visit the event's site.
March 7, 2018
Rochester Committee on Latin America
Downtown Presbyterian Church
121 North Fitzhugh Street
Are you wondering what’s really going on in Venezuela? If the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and other mainstream news outlets are to be believed, the dual economic and political crises currently roiling Venezuela are entirely the fault of a corrupt, socialist dictatorship that only manages to cling to power through violent repression of dissent, control of the media and fraudulent elections. Beltway pundits contend that widespread scarcities of food and medicine, skyrocketing inflation and social turmoil are the inevitable end result of unsustainable and retrograde policies initiated during the presidency of Hugo Chávez (1999-2013).
Alexander Main spoke on the prevailing media narrative on Venezuela by debunking a few of its key assumptions and showing how the current crises in Venezuela have multiple causes, some attributable to the government of Nicolas Maduro, others attributable to the actions of sectors of the Venezuelan opposition, the United States government and other external players. Main argued that finding an enduring solution to Venezuela’s economic and political problems will require significant revisions of policy and behavior on the part of all of the aforementioned actors.
For more information, visit the Rochester Committee on Latin America's site.
March 4, 2018
11:30 AM -12:50 PM
Eastern Economic Association
39 Dalton St
Boston, MA 02199
CEPR Economist David Rosnick chaired a session titled "Labor Markets and the Environment" at the 44th Annual Eastern Economic Association Conference. The session included presentations from Anders Fremstad, Colorado State University; Mark Paul, Roosevelt Institute; Anthony Underwood, Dickinson College; Jared Fitzgerald and Juliet Schor, Boston College; and Hwayoung Jeon, Colorado State University. For more information, visit the conference site.
February 14, 2018
11:30 AM - 13:30 PM (UTC)
Diálogos por la democracia
Palacio de la Antigua Escuela de Medicina
República de Brasil 33
Ciudad de México, Cuauhtémoc 06010 México + Google Map
Acceso gratuito. Abierto al público en general. Se otorgará constancia de asistencia.
Mesa 2: Retos democráticos en México hacia las elecciones de 2018
Christy Thornton (Harvard University)
John Ackerman (IIJ UNAM)
Bernardo Barranco (Dictamen Ciudadano A.C.)
Tony Payan (Rice University, Texas)
Alex Main (Center for Economic and Policy Research, Washington, DC)
Para más información y el pre registro, visite http://dialogosdemocracia.humanidades.unam.mx
December 8, 2017
12:30 PM - 2:15 PM
Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—New York Office and the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS)
Holeman Lounge, National Press Club
529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor
Washington, DC 20045
How has American Empire changed in the transition from Obama to Trump? And is Trump a passing phenomenon or is he a harbinger of a more permanent shift in global politics? The "American Empire: From Obama to Trump" conference brought together internationally known analysts and activists to discuss core strategic questions of importance to the international community. Engaging differing visions of America’s role in the world under Trump, the conference addressed issues of global power relations, resurgent nationalism, right-wing populism, and climate change.
CEPR Co-Director Mark Weisbrot took part in a panel titled "American Empire: Differing Visions of America's Role in the World." He was joined by Maude Barlow, Chairperson, Council of Canadians and Food & Water Watch; Walden Bello, Former Member of Congress, Philippines, and 2003 Right Livelihood Award recipient; and Medea Benjamin, Co-founder, CODEPINK and Global Exchange.
November 13, 2017
Our Revolution Arlington
1520 N Courthouse Rd
Dr. Eileen Appelbaum from the Center for Economic Policy spoke to Our Revolution about "Gender, Economics, and Paid Family Leave." In addition, there was an open discussion about the November election. For more information, go to the group's Meetup page.
November 13, 2017
2:45 PM – 3:30 PM
Economists for Peace and Security
1100 New York Ave, NW,
Washington, DC 20005
Suite 200 East, 2nd floor, east tower
Economists for Peace and Security held its 10th annual policy Symposium in Washington DC on November 13, 2017, to discuss economics and American politics as well as the economic dimensions of current critical security issues. The program featured three panels of senior specialists who presented the elements of a program to address the most fundamental issues animating American political discourse. CEPR Co-Director Dean Baker participated in the panel titled "Growth, Jobs, and the Next Crisis" along with Josh Bivens of the Economic Policy Institute and Pavlina Tcherneva of Levy Economics Institute of Bard College.
More information on the symposium can be found here.
November 9, 2017
12:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Lutheran Church of the Reformation
212 East Capitol St., NE Washington, DC 20003
CEPR Research Assistant Lara Merling joined a panel discussion on Puerto Rico with Reverend Heriberto Martínez Rivera of the Puerto Rico Bible Society and Puerto Rico Ecumenical Coalition on the Debt as part of the Jubilee Network's annual meeting and strategy session. For more information, visit Jubilee USA or contact Kate Zeller (kate[at]jubileeusa.org) at 202-783-3566 ext. 105.
November 3, 2017
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Colorado European Center of Excellence, Josef Korbel School of International Studies
Anna & John J. Sie International Relations Complex
University of Denver
2201 S Gaylord, Room 1150
Denver, CO 80208
University of Denver Professors Martin Rhodes and George DeMartino moderated a workshop titled "What is the Future of International Trade?" exploring the future of international trade considering the current global climate. CEPR Co-Director Dean Baker took part in a discussion on "The Retreat from Trade Liberalization and Contested Trade Governance" with Jennifer Bair, Department of Sociology, University of Virginia.
For more information or to RSVP, click here.
November 2, 2017
The Center for Justice and International Law, Guatemala Human Rights Commission, Latin America Working Group Education Fund, JASS (Just Associates), Nobel Women’s Initiative, CIP Americas Program, Witness for Peace and the Center for Economic and Policy Research
Honorary Host: Congressional Progressive Caucus
Rayburn House Congressional Office Building, 2226
The Center for Justice and International Law, the Guatemala Human Rights Commission, the Latin America Working Group Education Fund, JASS Nobel Women’s Initiative, and the Center for Economic and Policy Research held an event titled "Dam of Violence: The Plan that Killed Berta Cáceres: A Presentation of the Conclusions and Recommendations of an Independent Investigation into the Murder of Berta Cáceres" with members of the International Advisory Group of Experts (GAIPE) and the daughters of Berta Cáceres.
On March 2, 2016, the renowned indigenous and environmental activist Berta Cáceres was brutally murdered in her home in La Esperanza, Honduras. Amid concerns over how the murder case was being handled, Cáceres’s family members and Cáceres’s organization, the Civic Council of Popular Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH, by its Spanish initials), with the support of Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice, the Center for Justice and International Law, and others, convened an International Advisory Group of Experts (GAIPE) to carry out an impartial and independent investigation into the facts surrounding Cáceres’s murder and the simultaneous attempt on Gustavo Castro’s life.
One year after being created, the GAIPE released its final report in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, and Washington, DC, which includes new evidence that powerful individuals appear to have been involved in a conspiracy to assassinate Cáceres. The report provides conclusions and recommendations as to how Honduras should proceed with the official investigation and bring to justice those responsible for Cáceres’s murder.