Managerial Insights

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2022-07-25 Cecilia Attanasio Ghezzi

Has Beijing’s Economic Dream Reached the End of the Line?

“Without [bank] deposits, there are no human rights,” “The ‘Chinese dream’ of 400,000 depositors was shattered in Henan.” The banners shown by the demonstrators in Zhengzhou, the capital of the region of the same name in Central China, went viral in just a few hours. It was July 10, 2022, and hundreds of men and women who demanded access to their savings were beaten up by not-better-identified plainclothes agents. They have been asking for compensation from the local government since mid-April. But in June, when they attempted to organize the first public demonstration, their digital ...

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2022-07-13 Elisa Borghi, Donato Masciandaro

Urban Governance, Economic Growth, and Civic Capital: History Counts, in the South As Well

What is the most common interpretation the media have given of the recent local elections? The answer: a major test of the strength of the center-left and center-right coalitions in view of the upcoming national political elections. No surprise here, provided that this perspective never makes us forget how important urban governance can be to influence the economic and civic growth of citizens; even after centuries. This is one of the most intriguing results of a recent current of academic research that takes the name of “persistence.” The idea is ultimately simple: the economic and social ...

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2022-06-28 Cecilia Attanasio Ghezzi

The Uyghurs in China and the Risk of Genocide

On June 9 of this year, the European Parliament approved a resolution that prohibits the importation of products made through forced labor of Uyghurs. In the wake of the law approved last December by the United States Congress, the EU stressed that the separation of children from their families, sterilization programs, and forced labor in the autonomous region of Xinjiang “are crimes against humanity and can constitute genocide.” This is a harsh condemnation of Beijing, but like all resolutions, is non-binding. De facto, it is a way to put pressure on the European Commission and the Member ...

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2022-06-16 Andrea Beltratti, Alessia Bezzecchi

All Quiet on the Western Front? The Challenge of Sustainable Sustainability

In six months the macroeconomic picture has changed radically: from growth without inflation to anticipated stagflation. In December 2021, the ECB forecast economic growth of 4.2% in 2022, a reduction from the forecast of 4.6% formulated in September of the same year. Inflation was expected to be 3.2% for 2022, a strong increase from the 1.7% expected in September. In June 2022, the forecast for growth fell to 2.7% and inflation could exceed 8% in May. In the United States, growth for 2022 could be 3%, but most economists see a recession coming within 12 months, and inflation is already 8.6%. ...

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2022-05-25 Roberto Ruozi

What Happens After Financial Crises

Despite the progress made by national and international oversight authorities, the number of banking and financial scandals has grown, creating increasing problems for shareholders, creditors, employees, and other stakeholders, and often provoking a very dangerous domino effect. In recent years I have dealt with some of them, such as Gamestop, Archegos, Wirecard, Evergrande, Greensill, and N26 Bank. Those scandals, that have been amply analyzed and commented on in the specialized press, remained in the news for a while, especially in Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, and China, but ...

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2022-05-18 Cecilia Attanasio Ghezzi

The Great Flight from China

It all began at the end of March. The approximately 25 million residents of Shanghai underwent mass Covid tests, and then, although the authorities had said it wasn't necessary, an unprecedented lockdown was implemented. One week later, the logistics of the most modern and cosmopolitan city of continental China were in total chaos. No food for citizens blocked in their homes by decree, medical urgencies ignored, families divided, nursing homes out of control, quarantine centers overflowing, illuminated 24 hours a day and without showers. General discontent on social networks, followed by censure. ...

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2022-05-13 Donato Masciandaro

War and the Central Banks: Many Different Standards

On March 10, the ECB opened its press release relating to monetary policy decisions with the Russian aggression against Ukraine, defining it as a "watershed moment for Europe." From that point on it was clear that the evolution of the war would be crucial to orient the navigation of monetary policy, that must find a balance between avoiding the risk of inflation, on the one hand, the reducing the risk of recession, on the other. In this sense, in April 2022 the ECB announced a strategy based on two successive steps: first a gradual reduction of the emission of liquidity on the markets, and only ...

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2022-04-26 Cecilia Attanasio Ghezzi

China’s Difficult Balancing Act on the War in Ukraine

“Wuwei wubuwei,” says the principle that summarizes Taoist philosophy: “Do nothing and nothing will remain unaccomplished.” This is how Beijing maintains a difficult balancing act between the positions of Moscow and those of Washington and Brussels; even after the highly-anticipated meeting between the Chinese president and the highest authorities of the European Union (in virtual form, that is), even in the approach state media takes in reporting (or not reporting) on the first terrible images from Bucha. By abstaining in votes at the United Nations, and not contradicting the claims from ...

ESG Real estate
2022-04-11 Andrea Beltratti, Alessia Bezzecchi

Sustainable Real Estate

Demand does not become equal to supply by magic. Technology influences both, but does not create products and services by itself. Companies must estimate the demand coming from society and create the conditions for the creation of supply. Without management and its ability to manage businesses in the best manner possible, we cannot meet the challenge of sustainability, in which real estate has a prominent role.   Real Estate Sustainable Value Creation   In the REInnovation Academy C-Suite Forum,[1] sustainability in real estate was defined, recalling the 1987 United Nations Report “Our Common ...

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2022-04-04 Fabrizio Perretti

Compare to Whom? A Reflection on Benchmarking

Benchmarking represents one of the most common management tools used by businesses.[1] As unfortunately happens for many tools and models of strategy, where as time passes from their introduction the awareness of their complexity declines, with the risk of using gradually simplified versions that are different from the original, the same has happened with benchmarking analysis. Introduced at the end of the 1970s by Xerox Corporation with the aim of recovering the competitiveness lost in regard to its Japanese competitors, benchmarking is based on a comparison between the company’s internal processes ...