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IMF Conference

High-Level Seminar: The Political Economy of Reforms

IMF Offices in Europe
December 3, 2010
66 avenue d'Iena, 75116 Paris, France


Together with the Paris School of Economics (PSE), the European, Fiscal Affairs, and Research Departments, the IMF Offices in Europe are organizing a high-level seminar on "The Political Economy of Crisis-Induced Reforms" on December 3, 2010.

Conventional wisdom states that high growth makes structural reform less costly, but also less urgent, while negative growth or outright crisis makes reform more urgent, but also more costly. A protracted period of weak economic activity may constitute the worst of both worlds, with growth still too fast to make reforms urgent and yet too slow to cushion their costs. If the conventional wisdom is correct, does the prospect of a very slow post-crisis recovery mean that Europe is condemned to reform-inertia? Or, does the experience inside or outside of Europe provide reason to hope that policy-makers in Europe can, with patience and appropriate sequencing of measures, make much-needed progress on an agenda of reforms to strengthen fiscal policy-making and boost potential output growth?

To address these questions, the Paris School of Economics (PSE) and the International Monetary Fund are jointly hosting a one-day high-level seminar on "The Political Economy of Crisis-Induced Reforms." The seminar will take place on December 3, 2010, at the IMF's Paris Office. The seminar aims at promoting a sharing of experience among participants (policy-makers, academics, and staff from international organizations), with the PSE and IMF serving as facilitators, to learn from practical experience and research about how to accelerate the reform process in Europe at this critical moment.

Separately, a working session with a more strictly academic focus will take place on December 2, jointly organized by the Chaire Banque de France at PSE and the IMF Research Department. The conclusions of this session will feed into the December 3 high-level seminar.

The event is by invitation only.


SEMINAR ON THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF CRISIS-INDUCED REFORMS
Friday, December 3, 2010 -- Ground Floor Conference Room A
9:15 - 9:30 Welcome:

Emmanuel VAN DER MENSBRUGGHE, Director, Offices in Europe, IMF

Opening Remarks:

9:30 - 11:00 Session 1: Restoring Sustainability: Structural Reform for Fiscal Consolidation
  Chair:

Carlo COTTARELLI, Director, Fiscal Affairs Department, IMF

Lead Speakers:

  • Allan DRAZEN, University of Maryland
  • George KOPITS, Fiscal Council, Republic of Hungary
  • Pier Carlo PADOAN, OECD
  • José TAVARES, Universidad La Nova, Lisbon
  • Fritz ZURBRUEGG, Federal Finance Administration, Switzerland
11:45 - 13:00 Session 2: Boosting Potential Growth: Structural and Labor Market Reforms
  Chair:

Francois BOURGUIGNON, Director, Paris School of Economics

Lead Speakers:

  • Samuel BENTOLILA, Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros (CEMFI)
  • Declan COSTELLO, European Commission
  • Stephen PURSEY, International Labour Organization
  • Gilles SAINT-PAUL, Toulouse School of Economics
13:00 - 14:15 LUNCH - KEYNOTE SPEAKER: MARCO BUTI, EUROPEAN COMMISSION
14:30 - 16:00 Closing Panel - Doing it: the Governance of the Reform Process
  Chair:

Mario MONTI, Bocconi University

Lead Speakers:

  • Erik BERGLOF, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
  • Marco BUTI, European Commission
  • Benoît COEURÉ, French Treasury
  • Carlo COTTARELLI, Director, Fiscal Affairs Department, IMF
  • Jean-Pierre LANDAU, Banque de France
  • Aaron TORNELL, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
16:00 - Closing PSE-IMF
Academic Seminar on the Political Economy of Crisis-Induced Reforms

IMF Offices in Europe
Thursday, December 2, 2010
14:00 - 16:30 Session 1: Financial Reforms and Bank Risk Taking

Discussant: Romain Ranciere

17:00 - 19:30 Session 2: Political Economy of Reforms

Discussant: Aaron Tornell