Holding other policies fixed, the average European would be better off if every European country taxed corporate profits at a rate of 20% (based as closely as possible on a common definition of profits).
All else equal, if corporations throughout Europe set quotas for a minimum number of women board members, the shareholder value of European companies would increase.
Taking into account the likely effects on investments in human capital by men and women, setting quotas throughout Europe for a minimum number of women board members would generate substantial net benefits for Europeans.
Subsidizing renewable energy sources is better than taxing fossil fuels, assuming the subsidy or tax would be set at levels that would reduce carbon emissions by an equivalent amount.
Germany’s solar-energy subsidies to date have produced net social benefits for Germany.
Solar-energy subsidies to date in Germany and other countries have produced net social benefits for the world.
Insights from psychology about individual behavior – examples of which include limited rationality, low self-control, or a taste for fairness – predict several important types of observed market outcomes that fully-rational economic models do not.
Please rate the importance (0=none; 5= highest) of each item below (presented to panelists in randomized order) in contributing to the 2008 global financial crisis.
Below are the individual responses for the European Panel.
Click here to see the individual responses for the US Panel.
The influx of refugees into Germany beginning in the summer of 2015 will generate net economic benefits for German citizens over the succeeding decade.
Holding labor market institutions and job training fixed, rising use of robots and artificial intelligence is likely to increase substantially the number of workers in advanced countries who are unemployed for long periods.
Rising use of robots and artificial intelligence in advanced countries is likely to create benefits large enough that they could be used to compensate those workers who are substantially negatively affected for their lost wages.
Consumers will be better off, on balance, if European cities treat firms that provide ride-sharing platforms (such as Uber) as substantively different from taxi firms, and thus not necessarily warranting the same regulation.
Assuming that taxi and ride-sharing companies were treated as substantively similar — including requirements that they operate on an equal footing regarding safety, insurance and taxation — letting ride-sharing services compete without restrictions on prices or routes would raise consumer welfare.
Regardless of how ride-sharing services are treated, existing regulations for traditional taxi firms in many European cities harm consumers by limiting competition.
Revising France’s labor market policies — by reducing employment protection, decentralizing labor negotiations to the firm level, and making training programs more accessible and responsive to labor demands — would, all else equal, increase productivity in France’s economy.
Reducing employment protection would reduce the equilibrium unemployment rate in France.
The ECB's asset purchases over the past two years have reduced the threat of deflation in the euro area as a whole.
If the economic outlook in the euro area becomes less favorable, then increasing the ECB's asset purchase program (in size or duration) would substantially increase the euro area's economic growth over the following five years.
In general, absent any inside information, an equity investor can expect to do better by holding a well-diversified, low-fee, passive index fund than by holding a few stocks.
Without changes in policy, a rising share of people who are over age 65 will exert a substantial downward influence on per capita real GDP in western European countries.
In European countries where the share of those over 65 is rising, there are net social benefits to adjusting retirement ages for state-financed (including pay-as-you-go) pension systems upwards, so that revised retirement ages better reflect longer life expectancies.
All else equal, there are substantial advantages to having much of Europe’s human capital and infrastructure for international financial activity clustered in a single city, as they are at present in London.
All else equal, Britain’s rules on hiring, firing and working hours are significantly more conducive to financial activity than those in other large European countries.
Setting the EU rules aside, and assuming it would take 2.5% of Italy’s GDP to recapitalize its banks, the Italian government would improve financial stability in Europe if it injected this amount of public funds into its banks.
If Italy were to inject public funds into its banks without imposing losses on at least some claimants, an important cost would be the effect on future incentives (economic or political) in Europe.
Because of the Brexit vote's outcome, the UK's real per-capita income level is likely to be lower a decade from now than it would have been otherwise.
Because of the Brexit vote's outcome, the rest of the EU's real per-capita income level is likely to be lower a decade from now than it would have been otherwise.
Freer movement of goods and services across borders within Europe has made the average western European citizen better off since the 1980s.
Freer movement of goods and services across borders within Europe has made many low-skilled western European citizens worse off since the 1980s.
Freer movement of people to live and work across borders within Europe has made the average western European citizen better off since the 1980s.
Freer movement of people to live and work across borders within Europe has made many low-skilled western European citizens worse off since the 1980s.
Giving tax incentives to specific firms to locate operations in a country typically generates domestic benefits that outweigh the costs to the country providing the incentives.
Europe as a whole benefits when European cities or countries compete with each other by giving tax incentives to firms to locate operations in their jurisdictions.
On the whole, the shift from state to private ownership of many industrial assets in central and eastern European countries after communism has increased productivity in those countries.
In general, using more congestion charges in crowded transportation networks — such as higher tolls during peak travel times in cities, and peak fees for airplane takeoff and landing slots — and using the proceeds to lower other taxes would make citizens on average better off.
This panel explores the views of European economists on vital public policy issues. It does this by polling them on important policy questions, by including a way for them to explain their answers briefly if they wish, and by disseminating these responses directly to the public in a simple format.
To that end, our panel was chosen to include distinguished experts with a keen interest in public policy from the main areas of economics, to be geographically diverse, and to include older and younger scholars. As with the IGM’s US panel, the experts are all outstanding researchers in their fields. The panel includes recipients of top national and international prizes in economics, fellows of the Econometric society and the European Economic Association, members of distinguished national and international policymaking bodies in Europe, recipients of significant grants for economic research, highly accomplished affiliates and program directors of the Centre for Economic Policy Research and the National Bureau of Economic Research, and past and current editors of leading academic journals in the profession. This approach not only provides a set of panelists whose names will be familiar to other economists and the media, but also delivers a group with impeccable qualifications to speak on public policy matters in Europe and beyond.
Questions for the European IGM Economic Experts Panel are emailed individually to all members of the panel. They are phrased as statements with which one can agree or disagree. The experts are also asked how confident they are in their knowledge of the issue associated with the question (10 being highest). Each panelist responds electronically at his or her convenience. Panelists may consult whatever resources they like before answering. They may also include brief comments with their responses, or provide links to relevant sources.
It is important to explain one aspect of our voting process. In some instances a panelist may neither agree nor disagree with a statement, and there can be two very different reasons for this. One case occurs when an economist knows a lot about a topic and yet sees the evidence on the exact claim at hand as ambiguous. In such cases our panelists vote "uncertain". A second case relates to statements on topics so far removed from the economist's knowledge that he or she does not feel well placed to judge. In this case, our panelists vote "no opinion".
Panelists suggest many of the questions themselves. Members of the public are also welcome to suggest questions (see link below). Although IGM faculty members are responsible for deciding the final version of each question, we send a draft of the question to the panel in advance and invite them to point out problems with the wording if they see any. This process helps us to reduce vagueness or problems of interpretation.
The panel data are copyrighted by the Initiative on Global Markets and will be analyzed for an article to appear in a peer-reviewed journal.
If you would like to propose a question for the European IGM Economic Experts Panel, please enter it below. To be considered, the question must be posed as an agree/disagree proposition.