Published in The National
Saudi Arabia’s third-quarter economic results were mixed. On the positive side, the fiscal balance improved: the 2017 deficit is expected to shrink to 8.6 per cent of GDP, compared to two consecutive years of over 15 per cent; while on the negative side, the IMF projected an anaemic growth rate of 0.1 per cent for the economy. These results have ignited a debate that is common to residents of western economies: is the government right to pursue austerity policies, or should it look to loosen the purse strings to stimulate the economy? The unconventional structure of Saudi Arabia’s economy means that answering this question requires a novel suite of analytical tools.
Published on the MEPC blog
In the wake of falling oil prices, Saudi society now needs a greater economic contribution from its regular citizens, outside the purview of what the government directly organizes—a point that Vision 2030 explicitly makes. In particular, one of the goals is: “Attaining a higher rank in the social capital index;” social capital is a measure of the extent to which citizens are connected to each other independently of the government, and of the degree to which they trust one other. How can Saudi Arabia build its social capital?
Published in The National
Last week's dramatically-launched anti-corruption drive in Saudi Arabia has left people in shock. But such big surprises are becoming regular fare as Crown Prince Muhammed Bin Salman and the country's government steadfastly pushes forward with the Vision 2030. What should we expect next?
Article: "How Think Tanks Support Economic Policymaking" (كيف تدعم مراكز البحوث اتخاذ القرارات الاقتصادية)
نُشر في صحيفة الحياة
English version below
في تقرير نشره معهد «لاودر» في جامعة «بنسلفينيا» عام 2016، احتلت الكويت المرتبة الأولى بين الدول الخليجية في عدد مراكز البحوث، إذ يوجد فيها 14 مركزاً، وهو عدد قليل نسبياً. فهل تعيق قلة هذه المراكز في الدول الخليجية تقدمها الاقتصادي؟ـ
According to a report published by the Lauder Institute in the University of Pennsylvania, in 2016, among the Arabian Gulf countries, Kuwait was ranked first in terms of think tanks, with 14, compared to merely seven in Saudi Arabia. In contrast, Iran had 59 think tanks (18th in the world), and Israel had 58 (20th in the world). The question is: to what extent does the paucity of think tanks in the Arabian Gulf countries impair their economic advancement?
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