March of the Cities
The Urban Revolution
David E. Bloom and Tarun Khanna
The year 2008 marks a watershed in the complex and ongoing urban revolution. For the first time, more than 50 percent of the world's people will live in urban areas. Rapid urbanization may prove a blessing, provided the world takes notice and plans accordingly.
(pdf file: 732 kb)
The poor are gravitating to towns and cities, but maybe not quickly enough. A faster pace of urbanization could induce more rapid poverty reduction. Development policymakers should facilitate this process, not hinder it.
(pdf file: 299 kb)
Big, or Too Big?
Megacities create special issues of governance, funding, and provision of services. Both national governments and megacities can secure potential benefits by exploring the devolution of clearly defined responsibilities and revenue-raising capacity that provide incentives for good governance.
(pdf file: 279 kb)
Point of View
What Is the Biggest Challenge in Managing Large Cities
Matthew Maury, Kishore Mahbubani, and Ramesh Ramanathan and Swati Ramanathan
Three points of view on different ways to manage the expansion of cities well .
(pdf file: 137 kb)
Also in This Issue
China's Rebalancing Act
Jahangir Aziz and Steven Dunaway
China's economic miracle may be at risk unless the country relies more on domestic consumption. But a rebalancing of the economy is unlikely to happen on its own. What's needed is adjustment based on monetary policy, price liberalization, financial market reform, and changes in government expenditure policies.
(pdf file: 424 kb)
Solving China's Rebalancing Puzzle
Market forces will do the trick "naturally." Real rebalancing involves a slowdown in investment and a drop in net exports rather than a further pickup in urban consumption, and this is by far the most likely scenario through the end of the current decade.
(pdf file: 325 kb)
Point of View
China's Approach to Reform
The Deputy Governor of the People's Bank of China gives an account of China's approach to development and economic reform, including efforts to promote consumption and consumer credit, reform the exchange rate regime, and improve macroeconomic management.
(pdf file: 143 kb)
China's Export Boom
Mary Amiti and Caroline Freund
China's exports are not only booming, they are also becoming more sophisticated. An IMF study shows China moving out of agriculture, apparel, and textiles into electronics and machinery.
(pdf file: 308 kb)
China's Growing External Dependence
China is no longer just an assembler of imported inputs. The domestic content of China's exports is increasing and its economic fortunes are increasingly tied to those of the global economy.
(pdf file: 410 kb)
Helping the Global Economy Stay in Shape
Carlo Cottarelli and Isabelle Mateos y Lago
In recent decades, the IMF was often seen as a global financial firefighter or aid catalyst. But providing financial assistance to countries in need has always been a means to an end. Today, the IMF is putting greater emphasis on promoting international financial stability by encouraging better policies.
(pdf file: 201 kb)
Letter from the Editor
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Letters to the Editor
The dark side of aid; Stop misusing PPP calculations; Make antiretroviral drugs available to all
(pdf file: 151 kb)
Tropical crops feel the heat
Information technology in Mongolia
The MDGs in north and central Asia
IMF web mailbox for debt-related issues
(pdf file: 145 kb)
People in Economics
Topping the Charts
Prakash Loungani profiles Harvard macroeconomist Robert Barro.
(pdf file: 235 kb)
The March of the Cities
Patrick Salyer and David E. Bloom
A chart-based look at the growth of cities around the world. By 2030, Africa, Asia, and Latin America are expected to account for more than 80 percent of the world's urban population.
(pdf file: 330 kb)
Back to Basics
Why Real Exchange Rates?
Luis A.V. Catão
Most people are familiar with the nominal exchange rate�the price of one currency in terms of another. But what about the real exchange rate, and what�s the distinction?
(pdf file: 121 kb)
Ethics and Finance: Finding a Moral Compass in Business Today, Avinash D. Persaud and John Plender
(pdf file: 136 kb)
Legal Foundations of International Monetary Stability, Rosa Maria Lastra
(pdf file: 133 kb)
The Practice of Economic Management: A Caribbean Perspective, Sir Courtney Blackman
(pdf file: 162 kb)
Essays on the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Economies, Dr. S.B. Jones-Hendrickson
(pdf file: 162 kb)
Mexico enjoys sustained growth and stability thanks to sound economic policies. Its challenge now is to undertake further reforms to accelerate growth and reduce poverty while compensating for a likely decline in oil revenue.
(pdf file: 267 kb)
The Rise of Sovereign Wealth Funds
Simon Johnson, the IMF's Economic Counsellor and Director of the Research Department, looks at the growth of sovereign wealth funds and assesses some of the risks.
(pdf file: 3,759 kb)