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water ocean

Can the water management work of Raffensperger & Milke provide the basis for substantial change in NZ

Peter Jackson took a few liberties with Tolkien’s text for the Lord of the Rings films. Most of them, I didn’t like. But one addition I rather liked came at the start. Frodo complained that Gandalf had arrived late, and Gandalf replied that a wizard is never late – nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Interest.co.nz
25 July, 2017
German flag

The never-ending story of Angela Merkel

Should you be familiar with German children’s literature, you would have encountered a curious character: the illusory giant (Scheinriese).In the works of Michael Ende, best known for his The Never-Ending Story, there is a fearsome giant called Herr Tur Tur. Just as all proper giants, Herr Tur Tur is so big and tall that he can be seen from far away.But there is something rather unusual about the giant Herr Tur Tur. Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
The National Business Review
21 July, 2017
NZcoins

Things I learned at the Economists’ Conference

If your main exposure to economics is hearing bank economists talk on morning radio, you might not have the most accurate picture of what economists do. Trying to guess what interest rates might do, or telling stories about the latest moves in the stock market, are not really what economics is about.To get a better picture, you could do worse than attend the New Zealand Economics Association’s annual conference. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
21 July, 2017
NZI Research Programme cover

Research Plan 2017-2020

The New Zealand Initiative is New Zealand's leading think tank.The Initiative produces accessible, evidence-based research (available in print and online) with a focus on policy areas we believe are vital for a free and prosperous New Zealand.  Read more

17 July, 2017
NZI Research Programme cover

The New Zealand Initiative releases three-year research plan

 The New Zealand Initiative has released its new research plan for 2017 through to 2020.The aim is the same as our previous research plans – to shape the policy agenda and tackle the big issues facing our country. Our team will continue to undertake in-depth research into what we see as the country’s biggest issues. These include housing, local government and education.The Initiative will also branch out into new areas of research focusing on healthcare, infrastructure and freshwater management. Read more

Media Release
17 July, 2017
One euro coin

Europe's trillion euro problem

Some people fear rising sea levels, asteroids hitting the earth or global pandemics. It is easy to be scared of such threats because one can easily understand them.With other risks, being appropriately scared is much harder. Some problems are just too complicated to cause the fear they deserve. Europe’s Target 2 system falls into this category.Should you now ask yourself “Target what?” you are not alone. Many finance experts, bankers and journalists have never heard of it either – certainly not... Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
The National Business Review
14 July, 2017
Housing1

Media Release: Special Economic Zones - an initiative worth trying

The New Zealand Initiative has welcomed news that Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are still under consideration by the Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges. We also note that government documents released under the Official Information Act show that Ministers Bill English and Steven Joyce were supportive of the proposal.In 2015, the Initiative released In the Zone: Creating a Toolbox for Regional Prosperity. Our research found that New Zealand’s centralism provides little room for regional policy innovation.In the Zone called for New Zealand to consider... Read more

Media Release
13 July, 2017
CreditsCards

Right and wrong in ComCom proposals

We all know two wrongs don’t make a right. But nor does getting something only half right. At least not when it is also half wrong.And that is precisely how we should view Commerce Minister Jacqui Dean’s announcement last week about proposed changes to the Commerce Act.She was right to rule out broadening s36 of the Commerce Act. But her proposal to grant the Commerce Commission powers to conduct proactive “market studies” is badly mistaken.Let’s start with s36. Read more

Roger Partridge
The National Business Review
7 July, 2017
Parliament

For effective competition

The Commerce Commission now has more powers to investigate competition issues in any area where it thinks there might be a problem. In this week’s National Business Review, the Initiative’s Chair, Roger Partridge, argues this was a bad idea. I, for one, welcome the Commerce Commission’s new powers to encourage more competition. Why? The Prime Minister this week reminded us that government is the country’s biggest monopoly. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
7 July, 2017

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