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POLI 340 (66)
Rex Brynen (65)

political culture.odt

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Political Science
POLI 340
Rex Brynen

Water Scarcity Population Growth – with population growth comes growth of the labour force – if you don't create jobs, your economic growth will suffer bc unemployment will be high – youth bulges in middle east, which are potentially very beneficial economically, if there are jobs the productivity will skyrocket – unemployment statistics in ME indicate high unemployment, but there are problems with this because they don't take into account employment in the informal economy or whether people are appropriately employed (employment which corresponds to their education) – in 1980s, in ME there was rapid growth of educational attainment, which creates a political problem because there is a mass of young educated people who can't get work, have time/energy to organize and protest – low levels of FLFP: consequences of this are a mass of untapped workers and skills so economic growth suffers – reasons given for low FLFP are political culture, oil wealth does not create many jobs and the jobs it does create are not traditionally female, high GDP/capita in ME makes it less urgent for a household to have 2 earners – Iran is an interesting case, because after Iranian Revolution, women's LFP was restricted a bit, but now there is a quite high rate because of the Iran/Iraq war which created necessity for women to be in the labour force, can't go back from this- it also never had to rely on tribal relations for power base Significant role of government – large public sector, except in Lebanon – significant consumer subsidies – significant trade and business regulation – weak governance: little accountability and poor administrative capacity – in 50s and 60s, public sector was very bloated- government employment was almost a guarantee for anyone who graduated university- 3 people to do 1 person's job – relative decline of public sector due to SAPs and neoliberalism of 90s, people still need employment so as a result the informal sector grew – considerable red tape, large but inefficient bureaucracy – argument is that economic development will improve public service, but this has not happened in the ME because oil wealthy do not care about public sector efficiency – also, economic development is supposed to improve accountability, has not happened in ME Corruption – perceptions of corruption: Tunisia is actually quite low in terms of perceptions of corruption – WB asks how often people have paid a bribe: in Tunisia, most people have never paid a bribe or seldom pay a bribe- in other countries it is higher (esp Egypt) Poverty and Inequality – problem with poverty lines is that every country has their own poverty lines and definitions of poverty, can even change within countries over the years – table used percent living on less than $2/day PPP – poverty rates in ME are higher than LatinAmerica, but much lower than SoutheastAsia/Africa – absolute poverty not very high – HDI: same position as poverty rates – gini index: certainly inequality exists, but less so than in LatinAmerica so i
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