What can we learn from the research on automation and digitalization? This question was answered at a seminar organized by IFN on Monday. Keynote speaker was Professor Melanie Arntz, ZEW in Mannheim and Heidelberg University. She has studied the effects of automation on labor markets in the OECD. Arntz explained that the discussion is often too doom-laden. From IFN Professor Lars Persson and Ph.D. Mårten Blix presented their research in the field. In a panel, chaired by digitization expert Sara Öhrvall, Annika Winsth, chief economist Nordea, also participated.
Mats Isaksson, head of the corporate affairs division at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), visited on Thursday IFN for a presentation of the organization. The questions were many posed by the attending researchers, concerning everything from recommendations made by the OECD and a firm's power of innovation to the allocation of responsibility in a business as well as IPOs.
Many IFN researchers have a great interest in education policy. Recently a study by Professor Magnus Henrekson, IFN, and Ph.D. student Sebastian Jävervall was showing that Swedish "school results are dropping for both the best and the worst students." The study was cited by a number of editorial writers, including Expressen, Svenska Dagbladet and Sydsvenskan. Henrik Jordahl, IFN, is the author of several reports on the school system, among these a study about municipalities’ systematic work to measure quality, which "appears to be neglected in comparison to for profit schools that have a more streamlined approach". Gabriel Heller Sahlgren, affiliated to the IFN, is the most prolific school debater. His latest report is called “Regulation and Funding of Independent Schools: Lessons from Sweden” (Fraser Institute, Canada, 2016).
Why didn’t the polls predict Donald Trump's election victory? Richard Öhrvall, IFN and Linköping University, was interviewed in a number of papers answering this question. To Dagens Nyheter he explained that focus of the US election has been on analysis of combinations of opinion polls, rather than individual polls. The incentive to make reliable but more expensive opinion polls has thus been weak. Öhrvall was also interviewed in Metro and Forskning & Framsteg. To the latter, he explained that "the evidence suggests that those with unconventional positions are less inclined to tell about them in the polls."
Professor Yves Zenou, affiliated to IFN and at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, has been elected Fellow of the Econometric Society. Since previously Assar Lindbeck, IFN and Stockholm University, is a Fellow. The Econometric Society is an international society of academic economists interested in applying statistical tools to their field. The organization publishes three scientific journals: Econometrica, Quantitative Economics and Theoretical Economics.
Professor Saras D. Sarasvathy, University of Virginia, held this year's Swedish, Schumpeter Lecture on the subject "Two Decades of effectuation Research: Implications for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Policy". Professor Magnus Henrekson, IFN commented. "We should prepare people in Sweden better for the kind of entrepreneurship that professor Sarasvathy is talking about," he explained. The panel included…
Assar Lindbeck, IFN and Stockholm University, has been awarded the Global Economy Prize 2017. The prize is awarded by the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. The Prize Committee consists mostly of former winners of the Global Economy Prize, of which the majority have also been awarded the Nobel Prize. The Global Economy Prize highlights the achievements of "those who view globalization as an opportunity to tap our creative potential. The prize winners recognize that our standard of living can be protected only through free market activity itself."
On Tuesday, Magnus Henrekson presented a report at the The Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, IVA. Together with Sebastian Jävervall, PhD student at Uppsala University, he has authored the report "Swedish school achievements are falling – what do we know?" Magnus Henrekson participated via link from Värnamo where the IFN board was visiting a number of businesses. The event and panel discussion at IVA was also attended by State Secretary Erik Nilsson, Per Kornhall, author and educational expert, and Pam Fredman, Chancellor at University of Gothenburg.
IVA's Chairman Leif Johansson, President of Ericsson and AstraZeneca, opened the seminar.