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  • Author: Gráinne De Búrca, Jonathan Zeitlin
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: Within the Convention process, the final reports of no less than four separate working groups - those on Simplification, Complementary Competences, Economic Governance and Social Europe - have come out in favour of including the 'Open Method of Coordination' (OMC) within the Constitutional Treaty. The relevant sections of these reports are attached in an annex.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Daniel Gros
  • Publication Date: 01-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: There is an urgent need to link the excessive deficit procedure with the issue of sustainability and hence the evolution of public debt. This note shows that there exists a simple way to introduce the evolution of public debt in the Stability Pact, which so far has focused exclusively on deficits. The link starts from the Maastricht criterion for participation in EMU concerning public debt and its reference value of 60% of GDP. The Maastricht criterion on public debt stipulates that if public debt exceeds 60% of GDP, it must be 'sufficiently diminishing and approaching the reference value at a satisfactory pace''.This note provides a numerical rule for evaluating whether public debt is indeed diminishing 'at a satisfactory pace'. This numerical rule is in accordance with the reference values in the Treaty and could be used as the basis for an 'excessive debt procedure'.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Paul C. Light
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Public confidence is essential to America's 1.5 million charitable organizations and the 11 million Americans they employ. Confidence clearly affects the public's willingness to donate time and money, shapes the political and regulatory environment that governs charitable organizations, and has at least some influence on morale within the charitable workforce.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Government, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Lex Rieffel
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Peace Corps is one of the smallest instruments in the foreign policy toolkit of the United States. It is a “boutique” agency with a superb reputation. The Bush administration has proposed doubling the number of Peace Corps volunteers working in developing countries to 14,000 by 2007, still below the 1966 peak of over 15,000 volunteers.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Agriculture, Peace Studies
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: James B. Steinberg, Mary Graham, Andrew Eggers
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: The Bush administration has begun to revise cold war rules governing national security information in order to counter terrorist threats to the United States. The president's homeland security plan calls for new intelligence efforts to protect the nation's borders, defend against threats within the United States, minimize infrastructure vulnerabilities, and improve emergency responses. Congress has given the new Department of Homeland Security responsibility for coordinating these strategies and assuring that accurate and complete information gets to those who need it.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Government
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Thomas J. Kane, Peter R. Orszag
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In recent years, many public colleges and universities around the country have announced double-digit increases in tuition. The recession and the resulting squeeze on state revenues are the immediate causes. However, the short-term crisis should not be allowed to obscure a longer-term shift in state financing of higher education, which began more than a decade ago. As states have struggled to respond to other demands on their budgets-primarily due to rising state Medicaid obligations-parents and students have been asked to pay an increasingly large share of the costs in public higher education.
  • Topic: Economics, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: William Gale, Megan McNally, Janet Rothenberg Pack
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Participants in the annual symposium on The Brookings-Wharton Papers on Urban Affairs—convened by Brookings and the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School—present research on issues unique to urban areas as well as on broader economic and policy topics that can apply to urban settings. This year's participants focused on urban education and presented findings on the results of an experiment designed to detect cheating on standardized tests, the impact of school reform in an urban setting, the effect of school quality on housing values, and the determinants of improved academic performance. Two other studies addressed other urban economic issues: the increase in economic inequality across and within geographic regions, and local variation in land use regulations. This year's Brookings-Wharton symposium took place at Brookings in October 2002. The resulting bound volume is due out this month from the Brookings Institution Press.
  • Topic: Economics, Education, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States, Pennsylvania
  • Author: Robert Litan, Richard Herring
  • Publication Date: 04-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: In 1999, after nearly twenty years of debate, the U.S. Congress finally passed legislation permitting bank affiliations with all sorts of other financial enterprises, and vice versa. In this step, the United States joined many other countries — especially in Europe and, more recently, Japan — in allowing the operation of financial conglomerates. But are financial conglomerates the wave of the future in finance? And if so, how are they to be regulated? These were the two central questions addressed in the fifth annual conference of the Brookings-Wharton Papers on Financial Services, an annual volume published by the Brookings Institution Press. The conference, held in October 2002 in Washington, D.C., convened financial services experts from around the world. The papers presented at the conference suggest, generally, that while the future may see more financial conglomerate activity than it has in the past, there still will be a role for specialist, or "monoline" financial companies. As for regulation, there is no settled model: some nations will pursue consolidated supervision, with authority over entire conglomerates vested in a single authority (often the central bank), while others will still regulate the pieces of diversified financial enterprises along structural lines.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Industrial Policy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Washington
  • Author: George Perkovich, Sandra Polaski, John Audley, Scott Vaughan
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Following the riotous 1999 meeting in Seattle, and a near failure in Doha in 2001, the World Trade Organization dedicated the current round of trade liberalization talks to “development.” Negotiators will meet in Cancun, Mexico, in September amid competing claims regarding what steps are necessary to make trade serve development goals. The catch phrases of international trade—“comparative advantage,” “the development round,” “trade not aid,” and “level playing field”—hide tough choices for both developing and developed country governments. Getting trade rules right is not sufficient for development, but getting them wrong can cripple it. The authors outline the policies that governments and international institutions will need to avoid a debacle at Cancun and to assist developing countries in achieving long-lasting growth.
  • Topic: Development, Globalization, International Organization, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Mexico
  • Author: Anatol Lieven
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The vital U.S. relationship with Britain is much more fragile than many Americans think. Thanks to the Bush administration policy on a range of issues, hostility to the United States among the British public is higher than it has been since the Vietnam War. Only the personal commitment and moral courage of Tony Blair made British participation in the Iraq War possible—and the result has been seriously to endanger his leadership at home. Above all, Americans must understand that the strategy of this British government, and of the British foreign policy establishment in general, is to avoid having to make a definitive choice between Britain's alliance with the United States and its place in the European Union. If Washington forces Britain to choose between the two, it may not choose the United States, and a collapse of the relationship with Britain would leave the United States without a single major Western ally. The consequences for U.S. power and influence in the world would be nothing short of disastrous.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, Peace Studies
  • Political Geography: Britain, United States, United Kingdom, America, Europe, Vietnam