We are pleased to announce 2nd WCCE keynote speakers:
E. Morris Cox Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science, University of California Berkeley (USA)
Gérard Roland received his PhD from Universite Libre de Bruxelles in 1988 and taught there from 1988-2001. Professor Roland is also a CEPR research fellow, where he was program director between 1995 and 2006. He serves as editor of the Journal of Comparative Economics, and was an associate editor for several other journals.Among Professor Roland's awards and honors are recipient of the Medal of the University of Helsinki, Officier de l'Ordre de Leopold II, and entry in "Who's Who in the World," "Who's Who in America," and Who's Who in Economics since 1776." He was a fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies in Behavioral Sciences in Stanford in 1998-1999. He was program chair of the Fifth Nobel symposium in Economics devoted to the Economics of Transition in 1999. He was named Jean Monnet Professor at Universite Libre de Bruxelles in 2001 and received an Honorary Professorship of Renmin University of China in 2002.
Title: "Comparative Economics in Historical Perspective"
Scholars of comparative economics have focused on the twentieth-century phenomenon of the comparison between the central planned economy of communist regimes and the capitalist economy, as if prior to the twentieth century, differences between economic systems were not so sharp. I will present evidence to the contrary showing that since antiquity there have been two opposed types of institutional systems: one resembling central planning and present in ancient China, ancient Egypt, the Inca Empire and other territorial states, and another one with strong market institutions, protection of property rights present mostly in city-states not just in the Mediterranean but throughout the world. I will argue that these institutional differences dating back to the antiquity, and shaped by special geographical conditions, are at the root of the two cultural systems in today’s world: individualism and collectivism. There cultural differences have effects on economic performance and institutions in today’s world.
Professor, Dean, Faculty of Economics, Moscow State University (Russia)
Alexander Auzan is one of Russia's leading economists. He is a member of the Presidential Economic Council, member of the Government Commission on Administrative Reform, Academic Advisor of the Institute for National Projects. In the late 1980s, he took part in the establishment of consumer protection associations. In 2004 – 2012, a member of the President's Council for Civil Society and Human Rights. In 2005-2011, the President of Association of Russian Economic Think Tanks (ARETT). In 2010 – 2012, a member of the Presidential Commission for Modernization and Technological Development of Russian Economy. He authored numerous papers on modernization of Russia, national values, and the dynamics of a social contract. His applied work involves economic and development consulting for national and regional governments, including participation in the development of “Strategy-2020” for Russia in 2011-2012.
Title: "Russian Revolutions and Evolutions: In Search of Solution to Path Dependence Problem"
Russian revolutions and evolutions are regarded by the author as two different approaches to overcoming the inertia of ineffective institutions and leading the country to a higher growth trajectory. These approaches were used alternatively, replacing one another, and they allowed Russia to achieve controversial results and temporary successes, creating specific cycles in the country’s historical development. The Paper carries out a detailed analysis of the period that followed the revolution of 1991-1993 and offers a hypothesis concerning the nature of this event, seen primarily as the revolution against shortages, or anti-deficit revolution, with the aim to build a consumer society. This aim has been achieved and now the country again faces a new strategic choice. The analysis of Russia’s mid-term and long-term prospects allows the author to outline possible scenarios of development of the country.
Yan Ai Foundation Professor of Social Science, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Division of Social Science (China)
Kung’s research interests encompass diverse topics in the areas of comparative historical development and the Chinese political economy. Currently, he is working on the relationship between institutions, culture, and long-run economic growth. More specifically, James is studying the rise of China’s meritocratic civil exam system (keju) and its long-term persistent effects, as well as the formation of culture (of Neo-Confucianism). On economic history, James is examining the relationship between population dynamics, market integration and social conflict in late imperial China, and the socioeconomic consequences of opium trade between China and Britain. On political economy, James is investigating issues pertaining to the political exchange between firms and officials in contemporary China and more broadly Chinese elite politics. Some of his recent works have appeared in the American Political Science Review, the Journal of the European Economic Association, The Review of Economics and Statistics, The Journal of Economic History, the Journal of Development Economics, and Political Science Research and Methods.
Title: “Long Live Keju! The Persistent Effects of China’s Imperial Examination System”
Chinese and East Asian societies have always valued education. I wish to show that this distinct culture reflects the persistent effect of China’s millennium-long civil examination system or keju—an institution designed to select officials to serve in government bureaucracy based on the examination of a coherent corpus of Confucianism-related knowledge. Specifically, I present evidence on the link between historical success in the imperial examination and the distinct Chinese culture of valuing education today. Moreover, I also show that this persistent effect is “transmitted” not just through human capital (genetic and otherwise) across generations, but also by means of culture; regions having produced more jinshi (the highest attainable qualification) in the past are also the places where the belief that education plays an important role in determining success is most profound today.