AISSEC - Italian Association for the Study of Comparative Economic Systems

About the lab

The Italian Association for the Study of Comparative Economic Systems (Associazione Italiana per lo Studio dei Sistemi Economici Comparati - AISSEC, was founded in Florence on April 7th, 1984.

AISSEC is a non-profit association whose main purpose is to promote study and research, both theoretical and empirical, in the field of comparative economic systems. To attain its aim the Association organizes conferences and scientific exchanges among its members and with scholars of related fields, stimulates research activities, fosters the publication of scientific works and establishes connections with similar foreign associations.

Featured research (13)

Energy access, as defined in SDG 7, is a consistent component of decent livelihood and is therefore strictly connected to the fulfillment of the broad goal of sustainable development. While it may have significant impacts on various dimensions of development and sustainability, this study focuses on its effect on the level of food security of the overall population (SDG 2). Although there are many reasons to suppose that electricity access is positively related to food security, such impacts are expected to accrue through both immediate and income-mediated routes whose size and prevalence are unknown. The immediate impacts of electricity access on food security refer to the effects on food production (availability) and on food conservation and preparation (utilization). Income-mediated impacts include cross-sectoral productivity increases and the creation of new economic activities, generating new income that in turn would improve the economic access to food. After theoretically discussing the two kinds of impacts, this work empirically verifies how the prevalence of undernourishment (SDG indicator 2.1.1) is related to the percentage of population with access to electricity (SDG indicator 7.1.1) in a panel of 54 developing countries over the period 2000-2014. By adopting a multi-step estimation method, we disentangle the immediate effects of electricity access on food security from the income-mediated effects that stem from changes in GDP per capita and its distribution. Results show that electricity access mainly exerts impacts on food availability and utilization, with only one fifth of impacts coming from income-mediated effects. This finding may lead policymakers to prioritize off-grid electricity investments in proximity of vulnerable households through small-scale and household-level electricity systems, which may improve food security by immediately affecting the local and subsistence food production, conservation and preparation.
By analysing a panel of 76 developed and developing countries for period 1980–2014, this paper provides new evidence about the relation between economic freedom and income distribution, measured through decile income shares. The results show that a higher degree of economic freedom has a negative impact on the first eight deciles; conversely, it favours the richest percentiles and, especially, the top 10% and 5%. While the results aim at reopening an old debate with new evidence, the paper calls for more accurate studies that estimate the effects that each subcomponent of economic freedom may have on income inequalities.
The paper offers a new country classification system defined in relative terms and jointly based on the level and the medium–long term rate of growth of per capita income. The classification system identifies four categories of economies: poor (low income–low growth), emerging (low income–high growth), booming (high income–high growth) and affluent (high income–low growth). After classifying 122 countries in periods 1985–1999 and 2000–2014, the paper focuses on the comparison of poor and emerging economies and, in parallel, of emerging and high-income economies, and characterizes their transitions across categories. In line with the empirical literature on economic growth, the results of multinomial logit analysis suggest that higher growth rates of export and investment are the main factors distinguishing emerging from poor economies. Further, a better institutional setting, measured by various dimensions of economic freedom, plays an important role in driving the transition of low income countries from low to high growth. Moreover, along with a better technological advancement, it also represents the crucial attribute differentiating high-income from emerging economies.
This article proposes a general definition of emerging economies (EEs) and investigates the main determinants of their high rates of economic growth by extending the basic framework of neoclassical growth models to include various dimensions of economic development. According to the proposed definition, we find a list of 38 EEs for the period 2000?2014, whose emergence is proved to be strictly associated with the decline of the age dependency ratio, the increasing rates of investment growth and the improvements in human capital.
In their period of rapid economic growth China and India have experienced profound structural transformations. The aim of the paper is to analyze the relation between structural change, the process of globalization and economic growth in the two great Asian countries, using a highly disaggregated dataset for the 1987-2009 period. While China had a longer and more intensive productivity growth than India, the latter had a somewhat more balanced growth. Both countries registered higher within-sectors gains in productivity than between-sectors ones. Our analysis also shows that there exist important feedbacks between structural change, globalization and economic growth over time. When the reallocation of labor is large, it may positively impact on the future rates of economic growth. At the same time, however, it seems that a too rapid economic growth may hinder a smooth reallocation of labor. In both countries, new policies should be designed to favor labor movement across sectors and areas, to reduce the wage-productivity differentials and to integrate the informal sector in formal markets in India, in order to foster structural changes and enhance economic growth. If a too unbalanced economic growth has somewhat limited the extent of structural change, globalization has on the contrary promoted it. High level of export, import and FDI not only has been related to higher rates of economic growth, but also to a deeper reallocation of resources across sectors, modifying the comparative advantage and reorganizing the production.

Members (23)

Francesco Saraceno
  • Sciences Po Paris
Alessandra Vecchi
  • University of Bologna
Alessandro Arrighetti
  • Università di Parma
Lorenzo Pellegrini
  • Erasmus University Rotterdam
Maria Sassi
  • University of Pavia
Andreas Savvides
  • Cyprus University of Technology
Gani Aldashev
  • Université Libre de Bruxelles
elena vallino
elena vallino
  • Not confirmed yet