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Sound Money Economics System was a fringe political party in Manitoba, Canada, during the provincial election of 1941.

Articles by The Sound of Economics

Will ‘common prosperity’ address China’s inequality?

October 13, 2021

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The concept of “common prosperity” has deep roots in the Chinese Communist Party. It was already used in the 1950s and the late 1970s under different leaderships. On August 17 2021, President Xi Jinping highlighted this concept again, calling for China to achieve “common prosperity”, seeking to narrow a yawning wealth gap that threatens the country’s economic ascent and the legitimacy of Communist Party rule. Since then, there have been simultaneous crackdowns on business sectors and individuals, many of which fall under the umbrella of ‘common prosperity’.
Why is this term being brought up again? Why now? What policies have followed? What does the regime want to achieve? Giuseppe Porcaro is joined by Bruegel

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Is tech redefining the workplace for women?

October 6, 2021

Laura Nurski, Sabine Theresia Köszegi and Giuseppe Porcaro explore the relationship between artificial intelligence and job transformation and ask whether the impact differs by gender.

Today, work is often segregated by gender — with great ramifications for women across the world. Will increased use of technology decrease or increase current discrepancies? What can we do today in our schools and workplaces to help women in the future?
Bruegel’s own Giuseppe Porcaro spoke to Bruegel Research Fellow Laura Nurski and the Technical University of Vienna’s Professor Sabine Theresia Köszegi about the future of work and gender. Together, they explore the contemporary challenges women face in the workplace, and the potential for solutions in the future.
Want to learn more about gender and

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A green fiscal pact

September 29, 2021

How can the European Union increase green public investment while consolidating budget deficits?
The Sound of Economics
Date: September 29, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

Past crises and consolidation episodes have resulted in major public investment cuts. However, in order to meet the European Union’s climate goals, the additional public investment needed is between 0.5 percent and 1 percent of GDP annually during this decade. How does the EU grapple with just how far-reaching the economic implications of the green transition will be?
In a paper presented at the recent ECOFIN in September, Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff and Senior fellow Zsolt Darvas advocate for a ‘green golden rule’, that exempts net green public investment from the debt and deficit

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Exploding energy prices

September 23, 2021

Wholesale gas prices have reached record highs in the past months, leaving EU governments scrambling for emergency aid to help households cope with their rising bills. However, this is not only about energy: though its origins might be environmental, there are diplomatic, social and economic consequences for governments and citizens. And less than two months after the EU’s bold ‘Fit-for-55’ climate initiative, a gas crisis is threatening the EU’s green agenda.
In this episode of The Sound of Economics, Giuseppe Porcaro hosts Bruegel scholars Simone Tagliapietra and Georg Zachmann on the back of their recent blog post on the price of electricity.

Recommended readings:
Tagliapietra, S. and G. Zachmann (2021) ‘Rethinking the security of the European Union’s gas supply’, Policy Contribution

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Unboxing the State of the Union 2021

September 15, 2021

In this Sound of Economics Live episode, Bruegel experts look at the State of the Union address delivered by Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission.
The Sound of Economics
Date: September 15, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

On 15 September Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, delivered the State of the Union address before the European Parliament. She took stock of efforts of the past year to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and presented priorities for the year ahead, addressed the most pressing challenges and propose ideas for shaping the future of the EU, from NextGenerationEU to the European Green Deal and Europe’s Digital Decade.
In this episode of The Sound of Economics Live, Giuseppe Porcaro hosts Grégory

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A Late Bloomer: where is China’s climate plan?

September 8, 2021

The world awaits China’s concrete plan on carbon reduction, but the country is following its own pace.

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As the largest global emitter of greenhouse gases, China is key to the success of the upcoming COP26 and the global effort for climate neutrality by the mid-century. Yet two months ahead of the Glasgow convention, China has yet to present a concrete policy path to become net-zero by 2060. Why is China taking so long to announce its carbon reduction plan? Giuseppe Porcaro hosts Bruegel China expert Alicia García-Herrero, climate economist Simone Tagliapietra and Dr. Michal Meidan, Director of the China Energy Research Program from the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, to discuss climate, Chinese affairs and

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The EU recovery fund – state of play and outlook

September 1, 2021

Live from the Annual Meetings: Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff discusses the EU recovery fund, its state of play and outlook with Nadia Calviño, First Vice-President and Minister for Economy and Digitalization of Spain and Professor Karolina Ekholm of Stockholm University.
The Sound of Economics
Date: September 1, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

The recovery plan gives Europe a chance to emerge stronger from the pandemic, transform the economy and create opportunities and jobs. It is important that those plans are implemented in a manner that is efficient, fair and sustainable.
Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff hosts a conversation between Nadia Calviño, First Vice-President and Minister for Economy and Digitalization of Spain and Karolina Ekholm, Professor in

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Environmental, societal and governance criteria: hit or miss?

August 26, 2021

Is sustainable investing contributing to society’s climate and social goals, or preventing systemic change?

Sustainable investing is gaining in popularity as socially conscious clients consider environmental, societal and governance (ESG) criteria when deciding on potential investment. As a result, the financial world is offering more ESG compatible products on the market.
While well intentioned, the ability and capacity of ESG criteria in corporate disclosure to achieve climate and social goals is questionable. Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff hosts a debate between Tariq Fancy, the BlackRock executive turned ESG whistleblower, and Non-resident fellow Rebecca Christie, on whether sustainable investing will make the world a better place, and how it differs between North America and Europe.

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Are robots taking our jobs?

July 20, 2021

What will be the impact of automation on the economy? Bruegel’s own Giuseppe Porcaro discusses with Aaron Benanav, Laura Nurski, and Alexis Moraitis.
 In the future, what forces will cause the economy to grow and stagnate? What impact will AI and automation have on the economy? Is capitalism a sustainable economic model?
Today on The Sound of Economics, we’re asking the big questions. In order to find answers, our own Giuseppe Porcaro hosts Aaron Benanav, recent author of Automation and the Future of Work. Benanav argues that the “rise of the robots” may not really explain future employment crises, or our failure to move into a post-scarcity era.
Meanwhile, Bruegel Research Fellow Laura Nurski adds insight from her own research at Bruegel’s Future of work and inclusive growth project,

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A fitting plan for the European Green Deal?

July 15, 2021

Ensuring competitiveness of low-carbon investments
At this event, speakers will introduce the core idea of commercialisation contracts, and then discuss key design elements. This includes whether contracts should be issued at the EU or national level, how competition for contracts should be organised, and which industries should be eligible for support.

Speakers: Natalia Fabra, Peter Handley, Ben McWilliams and Georg Zachmann
Topic: Energy & Climate, European Macroeconomics & Governance
Date: July 1, 2021

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What should public spending look like?

July 14, 2021

What should we do about the increase in public spending due to COVID-19? Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff and Former Deputy Secretary-General of OECD Ludger Schuknecht discuss.

Here’s what’s clear: public spending is on the rise. Public expenditure ratios have quadrupled since 1870, and increased even more in the recent COVID-19 pandemic.
Is that good or bad? What does responsible public spending look like? How should governments institute reforms in order to improve their public spending agendas?
These questions are less clear. Bruegel’s Director, Guntram Wolff, sits down with Former Deputy Secretary-General of OECD, Ludger Schuknecht to discuss the issues surrounding public spending in post-pandemic economies.

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CCP’s 100th Anniversary: Reflecting and looking forward

July 7, 2021

As the Chinese Communist Party celebrates its 100th anniversary, we looked into the past, future and present of the country’s economic development.

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On July 1st, 2021, the Chinese Communist Party celebrated its 100th anniversary. Today, Bruegel’s Giuseppe Porcaro speaks with Bruegel Senior Fellow Alicia García-Herrero and Professor Steve Tsang, Director of SOAS China Institute at University of London about the past, present, and future of the Party. What are the Party’s successes and failures? What is the “China model”? Will it ever be exported to other nations? Can the country’s economic success continue?

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Restarting the economy?

June 30, 2021

While the end of the pandemic is still far, the economy will have to restart.
The Sound of Economics
Date: June 30, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

This podcast is an output from the MICROPROD project, which received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 822390.

When COVID-19 struck last spring, European governments rapidly implemented measures to keep businesses afloat. Did those policies support productive firms that bolster the economy? Or, did the policies merely enable the survival of “zombie” firms that ought to have gone bankrupt?
One year into the pandemic, Bruegel Deputy Director Maria Demertzis speaks with professors Steffen Müller, Filippo di Mauro, and Carlo Altomonte about

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The skills of the future

June 23, 2021

‘Technological change is revolutionising the workplace’, ‘the future is automated’ and ‘a robot will be doing my work before long’ are phrases we hear a lot when it comes to discussing the impact of technological advancement on the labour market and skills. But what is the real impact of robots or AI on the workforce? And, how can we steer technological change in a direction that is labour-complementing and welfare enhancing? How can governments and businesses help workers to adapt to technological change, through reskilling and transitioning initiatives?
As part of Bruegel’s Future of work and inclusive growth project, Bruegel fellow Laura Nurski and Dimitrios Pikios, ESCO Project coordinator at DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion at European Commission joined Giuseppe Porcaro to

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Avoiding a requiem for the WTO

June 16, 2021

The WTO has been ‘missing in action’: how can we restore the organisation’s role as a global forum for cooperation on trade?

As the only global international organisation dealing with the rules of trade between nations, the World Trade Organisation should be the place where governments sort out the trade problems they face with each other. However, in recent years, WTO members have not managed to conclude new agreements to liberalise trade in goods and services. The organisation has not played a significant role in defusing and addressing the trade conflict between the US and China. It was also largely ‘missing in action’ during the first stages of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
All these lead to the conclusion that reform is necessary – whether the political will exists to re engage

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[LIVE] A transatlantic climate alliance

June 11, 2021

When Joe Biden visits Europe for the first time as US president, he should begin forging a transatlantic green deal.
 President Biden is visiting Brussels for the first time since his inauguration on 14 June, with great expectations by European commentators to forge a closer transatlantic cooperation.
Prior to his visit, Giuseppe Porcaro and Simone Tagliapietra are joined by Ana Palacio, Former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain to discuss why the two sides of the Atlantic should form a climate alliance, which are the challenges the EU and the US will have to overcome; and most importantly, if this joint cooperation would be enough to leverage the rest of the world.
Relevant publications:
A transatlantic climate alliance, Opinion by Ana Palacio and Simone Tagliapietra.

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Challenges and growth of China’s private sector

June 9, 2021

Is the dynamic role of the private sector in China under threat by its economic model and the United States?

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Since 2010, the landscape of China’s largest companies has shifted away from the dominance of state-owned enterprises towards a more diverse and complex landscape with an increasing number of mixed-ownership enterprises and non-public enterprises.
This evolution, however, has been far from linear with Chinese private companies facing several challenges. In this episode, SHAN Weijian, Chairman and CEO of PAG, joins Giuseppe Porcaro and Alicia García-Herrero from Hong Kong, to share his insights on how the private sector has progressed and the road ahead.

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Belarus: a test for Europe’s foreign policy?

June 1, 2021

The forced landing of an internal EU flight is just the latest development in the President of Belarus’ efforts to cling to power.
The Sound of Economics
Date: June 1, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

The recent forced landing of an internal EU flight to arrest opposition activist Roman Protasevich is the latest escalation by a President who is consolidating power in the wake of unrest following the disputed results of the 2020 presidential election. The EU and international community reacted with further retaliatory sanctions and a flight ban over and by Belarussian airlines. Where does EU external action go from here?
This week, Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff is joined by Sławomir Dębski, Director of the Polish Institute of International Affairs (PISM),

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Towards a global corporate tax?

May 26, 2021

The idea of a global corporate tax has been floating around for decades, but a US proposal for a 15% of a global minimum tax rate means the proposal is now a serious possibility. This would affect both direct and indirect taxation, broader tax policy issues, and tax administration.
In this live episode of The Sound of Economics, Giuseppe Porcaro is joined by Bruegel scholars Rebecca Christie and Niclas Poitiers, to discuss the outlook of global corporate tax and its possible outcomes.
Stay tuned for the upcoming blog by Rebecca Christie setting out in detail what a global corporate tax could look like.

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A stronger euro comes with more responsibility

May 19, 2021

The Sound of Economics
Date: May 19, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

European strategic autonomy is probably the single most used watchword in European circles, if only because of lack of consensus about what it entails. US bashing for some, a more confident and independent EU for others, the concept has well and truly moved out of the security and defence area into every area of EU policy. This is most apparent in the debate around the international role of the euro, where institutional thinking has shifted fast in the past couple of years. Is it inevitable?
In this episode of The Sound of Economics, Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff is joined by Franziska Brantner, Member of the Bundestag and Europe spokesperson for Alliance 90/The Greens’ parliamentary

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New kid in the playground: China’s antitrust push

May 12, 2021

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China’s growing economic power is causing great anxiety in the West: European regulators are tightening the rules on takeovers by Chinese state-owned giants, while the United States is imposing aggressive sanctions on leading Chinese technology firms such as Huawei, ByteDance (TikTok) and Tencent (WeChat).
In this episode of The Sound of Economics, Bruegel’s Alicia García-Herrero, Mario Mariniello and Giuseppe Porcaro make the virtual trip to the enclave of Hong Kong, where they are joined by Angela Huyue Zhang, an expert on Chinese law and the author of “Chinese Antitrust Exceptionalism: How the Rise of China Challenges Global Regulation”. She draws on her experience of examining how Chinese

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The Sound of Gita Gopinath

May 6, 2021

IMF Chief Economist Gita Gopinath joins Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff to discuss the uneven recovery from the pandemic with a live clubhouse audience.

IMF Chief Economist Gita Gopinath joins Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff for this Live recorded session. They were able to discuss the uneven recovery from the pandemic. In the latest World Economic Outlook, the IMF warns that even though the global economy is on firmer ground, recoveries are diverging dangerously across and within countries, as economies with slower vaccine rollout, more limited policy support, and more reliance on tourism do less well.
Global prospects remain highly uncertain one year into the pandemic. The outlook depends not just on the outcome of the battle between the virus and vaccines—it also hinges on how

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Money, money, money!

April 30, 2021

The nature of money is under scrutiny as central banks begin pondering issuing digital currencies
The Sound of Economics
Date: April 30, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

What is a central bank digital currency (CBDC)? How is it different from the money in a private bank account, or from cryptocurrencies? What do consumers stand to gain from CBDCs? Have cryptocurrencies enabled the creation of the technology needed to guarantee anonymity, privacy and security?
To debunk the myths and get to the bottom of the hows and the whys of CBDCs, this week Giuseppe Porcaro is joined by Bruegel Deputy Director Maria Demertzis and Senior Fellow Gregory Claeys who will tell us just how likely digital currency is to replace the money under our mattress.

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Africa’s battle with COVID-19

April 21, 2021

How can we ensure a worldwide balanced and inclusive recovery from the Covid pandemic?

Before the pandemic, Africa was experiencing unprecedented economic growth and poverty reduction. While many economies have faced disruption around the globe, emerging economies face an even tougher challenge because they lack the tools at the disposal of developed countries, whether that be vaccines, macroeconomic liquidity or the ability of the labour market to work from home.
The global nature of the pandemic requires a global response. This January, Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff and Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa were appointed by the Italian G20 Presidency to the High Level Independent Panel on financing the global commons for pandemic preparedness and

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The future of CAI

April 7, 2021

Untangling the politics behind the EU – China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment

Recent sanctions and counter-sanctions between the EU and China have put the future of the Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) in doubt. Where do the parties go from here? In this episode of the Sound of Economics, Bruegel Director Guntram Wolff is joined by Mikko Huotari, Executive Director of MERICS – Mercator Institute for China Studies, to talk about the future of the agreement, the geopolitics at play and the role of the United States.

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To infinity and beyond: the European space sector and industrial policy

March 31, 2021

A transcription is available for this episode.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all our podcasts are recorded remotely. We apologise in advance for the sound quality and thank you for your understanding.

This is a very special moment for space exploration. The beginning of April will see the maiden flight of the first helicopter to another planet. The Artemis accords will mean that man will be back on the moon before long. The European Space Agency is building Daedalus, the first robot that will crawl inside lunar caves. The United Arab Emirates and India have successfully entered Mars’ orbit on their first try. Elon Musk has just stated that he will land his starship there before 2030.
We are in the midst of a new space race, this time not as a proxy of the Cold War of the

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Gender gap in financial literacy: a lack of knowledge or confidence?

March 24, 2021

“If women and girls are fearless, they will benefit by becoming more financially independent, more financially secure, more in control of their future and society will benefit.”
The Sound of Economics
Date: March 24, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

Women are less financially literate than men. But does this gap reflect a lack of knowledge or a lack of confidence? To find out Maria Demertzis, deputy director of Bruegel is joined by Annamaria Lusardi, Professor of Economics and Accountancy at the George Washington University and non-resident fellow at Bruegel and Maarten van Rooij, senior economist at the Dutch Central Bank in The Sound of Economics.
Annamaria and Maarten explain their findings in a recently published paper that about one-third of the

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Keeping momentum on good governance

March 17, 2021

Transparency, human rights and good governance: a conversation with Katalin Cseh MEP
The Sound of Economics
Date: March 17, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

Pandemic aside, the past year has seen renewed discussions in Europe on transparency and good governance as the EU takes an unprecedented role in health policy and procurement and in the creation of common debt.
As part of an ongoing effort to capture a wide range of views from the European Parliament, this week in The Sound of Economics Guntram Wolff talks to Vice President of Renew Europe and MEP for Hungary, Katalin Cseh to discuss all things governance, human rights, and transparency of vaccine purchasing.

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Low interest rates: a transatlantic phenomenon

March 10, 2021

Structural factors are putting downward pressure on rates: is it time for macroeconomic policy to play second fiddle in managing demand?
The Sound of Economics
Date: March 10, 2021
Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

Maria Demertzis and Nicola Vegi  join Giuseppe Porcaro to talk about their recent research on low interest rates, declining productivity growth and how to tackle this.
In both Europe and the United States, interest rates have been declining for more than fifteen years. For much of this period, real interest rates have been negative and they are expected to remain negative for at least another decade. The literature associates this decline in interest rates with a similarly protracted decline in productivity. But the decline in productivity appears

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Will China fall into the middle/high income trap?

March 3, 2021

The middle to high-income trap in East Asia and its China dilemma.

This episode is part of the ZhōngHuá Mundus series of The Sound of Economics.
ZhōngHuá Mundus is a new newsletter by Bruegel, bringing you monthly analysis of China in the world, as seen from Europe. Sign up now to receive it in your mailbox!
The middle-income trap describes a situation in which a country, having attained a certain income level, gets stuck there (due to given advantages). The high-income trap is of a similar nature, because although the positioning of these economies might be more advantageous to begin with, they find it difficult to promote innovation in manufacturing or upgrade to higher value-added services to remain competitive and provide benefits to a wider spectrum of society.
In this episode of The

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