International Monetary Fund


IMFSurvey Magazine: Podcasts

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Listen to IMF economists and other experts discuss key economic and financial issues of the day. Click on the play button. Alternatively, download the audio MP3 file—a popular digital music format for sound files. Broadcasters: this facility is also being made available to enable these podcasts to be broadcast on radio outlets free of charge. Also available in iTunes

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Kristalina Georgieva: The Long Ascent from the Depths of the Crisis

October 06, 2020

Kristalina Georgieva Talks Inequality with Oxfam

September 25, 2020

Small Elephants Play Big Role in Fighting Climate Change

September 21, 2020

Rethinking Work During and After Lockdown

August 28, 2020

Divided by Degrees: Angus Deaton on how More Americans Without B.A.’s are Dying of Despair

July 30, 2020

Paul Krugman on Zombie ideas and Economic Recovery

July 16, 2020

Kristalina Georgieva and David Pilling on Africa’s Outlook

July 10, 2020

Systemic Hazards and the Spheres of Well-Being

July 01, 2020

Vietnam: A Remarkable Response with Limited Means

June 28, 2020

Digitalizing Sub-Saharan Africa

June 25, 2020

Migration Part and Parcel of Healthy Global Economy

June 18, 2020

Safeguarding Food Security in sub-Saharan Africa

June 03, 2020

Ralph Chami: Umbilical Cord of Remittances Under Threat

May 29, 2020

Jonathan Ostry on How Pandemics Widen the Gap

May 18, 2020

Sub-Saharan Africa: COVID-19 A Threat to Development

May 12, 2020

Jihad Azour: Middle East, Central Asia Face Perfect Storm Amid COVID-19

May 04, 2020

Epidemiologists Help Steer Economy Through COVID-19

April 23, 2020

Fiscal Policy Provides Lifelines to People, Economies

April 14, 2020

Global Financial Stability Amid Covid-19 Pandemic

April 14, 2020

Kristalina Georgieva: Confronting the Covid-19 Crisis

April 09, 2020

Abebe Aemro Selassie: What Covid-19 Means for sub-Saharan Africa

March 27, 2020

Ian Parry: Why A Carbon Tax Makes Sense

June 28, 2019

David Dollar on the Value of Value Chains

June 14, 2019

Fanwell Bokosi on Taming Africa’s Debt Beast

June 05, 2019

Andrew Steer on How Fiscal Policies Can Help Save the Planet

May 17, 2019

African Continental Free Trade Area a Potential Game Changer

May 08, 2019

Nature Is Our Capital: Sir David Attenborough and Christine Lagarde

May 02, 2019

House Prices and Global Financial Stability

April 30, 2019

Three Chief Economists on Why Income Inequality Matters

April 25, 2019

Sawsan Gharaibeh: Curbing Corruption at Heart of Development

April 19, 2019

The Economics of Conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa

April 12, 2019

Vulnerabilities in a Maturing Credit Cycle

April 10, 2019

Patrick Imam on Citizenship and Growth

April 02, 2019

Spotting Global Risks Through Global Collaboration

March 20, 2019

Charlotte Cavaille: Populism, Immigrants and the Welfare State

March 06, 2019

Petra Moser on Italian Opera, World Fairs and Innovation

February 22, 2019

Amadou Sy: Fintech Breaking Down Barriers in Africa

February 13, 2019

David Coady: Strong Safety Nets Strong Growth

January 30, 2019

Maryam Farboodi on Big Data and Bigger Firms

January 24, 2019

Michal Rutkowski: Industrial-Era Welfare Policies are Falling Short

January 07, 2019

Sharan Burrow: Social Protections in the Age of Technology

December 22, 2018

Keith Mitchell on Catastrophe Risk Insurance: Time is Not on Our Hands

November 17, 2017

Grenada’s Prime Minister Keith Mitchell puts devastating hurricane season into perspective. (IMF photo)

In September 2017, the Caribbean was hit by the most powerful Atlantic hurricane in recorded history. Irma’s 185 mile per hour winds left several countries devastated. During a seminar on sovereign debt at the IMF World-Bank Annual meetings, Grenada’s Prime Minister and chair of CARICOM, Keith Mitchell, said catastrophe risk insurance could help vulnerable countries mitigate some of the risk from increasingly severe weather patterns.

Keith Mitchell, Prime Minister of Grenada and chair of the Caribbean Community CARICOM

Madhur Deora on India’s Digital Payment Boom

November 09, 2017

Madhur Deora (PayTM). Mobile payment platforms in India are providing small loans to people who’ve never had access to credit (IMF photo).

When the government of India last year declared that much of its currency in circulation would cease to be legal tender, digital transactions surged. Mobile payment platforms like PayTM stepped in to fill the void, and in the process are providing financial services to millions of people unable to open a traditional bank account. In this podcast, PayTM’s Madhur Deora, says financial technology is having an impact on India’s development. Deora joined a seminar about Fintech, during the IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings.

Madhur Deora, PayTM Chief Financial Officer

Sub-Saharan Africa: The Path to Recovery

October 30, 2017

Oil pipeline in Otu Jerenmi, Nigeria: A rebound in Nigeria’s oil production is helping boost growth (photo: George Esirie/ Reuters/Newscom)

The IMF's latest regional economic outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa suggests the broad-based slowdown in sub-Saharan Africa is easing. In this podcast, co-author Jarek Wieczorek, says growth is up slightly from last year, but so is public debt. "If we maintain the trend we saw in the last 3 years, the debt will become unsustainable in many sub-Saharan African countries.”

Jarek Wieczorek, Head of the Regional Studies Division in the IMF’s African Department

Lesetja Kganyago: South African Reserve Bank’s Contract with Society

October 20, 2017

Lesetja Kganyago, South Africa’s Central Bank Governor says new technology can help fight corruption (IMF photo).

As new technology rapidly transforms the financial services sector, central bankers are faced with mitigating risks without stifling innovation. But In this podcast, South Africa’s Central Bank Governor, Lesetja Kganyago, says inflation, currency depreciation, and political uncertainty remain his biggest challenges. Kganyago joined a panel discussion on what Fintech means for central banking during the 2017 IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings in Washington.

Lesetja Kganyago, Governor of the South African Reserve Bank

Maurice Obstfeld: What Lies Behind the Global Recovery

October 10, 2017

IMF Chief Economist Maurice Obstfeld, says global recovery is continuing, and at faster pace. (IMF photo)

The latest forecasts from the International Monetary Fund show global growth is on the rise. A very different picture from early last year, when the world economy faced faltering growth and financial market turbulence. In this podcast, IMF Chief Economist Maurice Obstfeld, delves into the current trends behind this recent upswing.

Maurice Obstfeld: What Lies Behind the Global Recovery

IMF iLab: New Space for Innovation

October 06, 2017

Tristan Walker, Head of the IMF’s new Innovation Lab (IMF photo).

The technological revolution has far reaching implications and is rapidly changing the way the world does business. But technology also offers the potential for finding solutions to some of the challenges facing the global economy. To encourage creative thinking among its economists, the IMF recently opened an innovation lab. In this podcast, Tristan Walker, first iLab Chief, says innovation will help make the institution more agile.

Tristan Walker, Innovation Lab Unit Chief

Laszlo Varro: Climate Change Shaping Energy Policy

September 25, 2017

International Energy Agency’s Laszlo Varro, says electricity sector is moving towards renewable energy in a very determined fashion (Photo: International Energy Agency).

80 percent of the world’s energy consumption is based on fossil fuels which account for most of the greenhouse gas emissions that are warming the planet. Climate change is affecting the global economy and has become a defining feature in energy policy making. In this podcast, International Energy Agency Chief Economist, Laszlo Varro, says while efforts to reduce carbon emissions are generally off track, technological progress and investment momentum in the clean energy sector are reasons for optimism.

Laszlo Varro, Chief Economist for the International Energy Agency

Gaining an Edge with Big Data

September 13, 2017

Mobile-phone and internet users leave behind increasingly detailed traces that are valuable to Big Data companies (photo: Ingram Publishing/Newscom).

Good data and statistics can help drive economies and are the basis for sound policy decisions in both private and public sectors. The advent of ‘big data’ poses opportunities for private companies and public institutions to better understand today`s economic and social trends. A new study by the IMF shows how big data can also provide valuable insight for economic and financial analysis. In this podcast, coauthor Diane Kostroch discusses the benefits and the challenges that come with big data.

Diane Kostroch, IMF economist, Statistics Department.

Benno Ndulu: Champion of Inclusion

August 30, 2017

Tanzania Bank Governor Benno Ndulu, says inclusive policies offer growing youth population opportunities to make a living and stay away from trouble (IMF photo)

Only a third of adults in sub-Saharan Africa have a bank account, and in this podcast, Tanzania Bank Governor, Benno Ndulu, says the lack of access to financial services is a key constraint on the region’s economic growth. Ndulu is a champion for bringing financial services to the poorest segments of society and as the current Chair of the Board of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion, he has helped pioneer some of the most innovative policy approaches to extending the financial system to the unbanked. This conversation with Benno Ndulu is featured in the September 2017 issue of Finance and Development Magazine.

Benno Ndulu, Bank of Tanzania Governor, and Chair of the Board of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion.

Mthuli Ncube: Building Blocks for Africa’s Growth

August 17, 2017

Electricity pylons, Cape Town. Frequent power shortages cause problems for businesses in South Africa. (photo: Mike Hutchings/Reuters /Newscom).

While Africa’s workforce expands, the lack of modern and efficient infrastructure is inhibiting economic growth. The prospect of building power plants and transportation networks is daunting for many countries with limited resources, but in this podcast, former Chief Economist of the African Development Bank, Mthuli Ncube, says reducing risks for private sector investors could help Africa build the infrastructure it so desperately needs.

Mthuli Ncube, Managing Director of Quantum Global Research Lab, visiting professor at Oxford University, and co-editor of Infrastructure in Africa: Lessons for Future Development

Growing Pains: Malawi’s Struggle with Hunger, Climate Change

August 07, 2017

Children eating maize porridge at Demera school in Central Malawi. Providing food helps prevent school dropouts during a food crisis. (photo: IMF/Bruce Edwards)

Extreme weather has hit Malawi’s economy hard over the last two years. Severe flooding followed by a drought—the worst in its history—caused widespread crop failure and placed 6.7 million people at risk of starvation. But a remarkable humanitarian effort helped reduce the impact of the drought on the most vulnerable segment of the population. An increase by the IMF to the amount of resources it provides to Malawi, as well as sizable contributions from Malawi’s development partners like the World Food Program and the World Bank, enabled the country to address the worst humanitarian crisis in its history.

Oral Williams: IMF Mission Chief for Malawi
Jack Ree: IMF Resident Representative in Malawi
Goodall Gondwe: Malawi’s Finance Minister
Ben Botolo: Malawi’s Secretary to the Treasury
Coco Ushiyama: World Food Program Representative for Malawi
Roisin DeBurca: Unicef’s Deputy Director for Malawi
Laura Kullenberg: Country Manager for the World Bank in Malawi
Richard Record: Senior Country Economist for the World Bank in Malawi

Eswar Prasad on the Curious Rise of the Renminbi

July 21, 2017

Eswar Prasad, Tolani Senior Professor of Trade Policy at Cornell University (IMF photo).

As China’s economy catches up in size with that of the United States, some predict the renminbi will soon challenge the dollar’s dominance in international finance. But in this podcast, Cornell University’s Eswar Prasad says there are limits to how far China’s currency can go without undertaking significant domestic reforms. Prasad, a former IMF economist himself, was invited to IMF headquarters in Washington to talk about his latest book Gaining Currency: The Rise of the Renminbi

Read the Transcript

Eswar Prasad, Professor of Trade Policy and Economics at Cornell University, Senior Fellow at the Brookings institution, and author.

Uganda: Rising Debt and the Promise of Oil

July 13, 2017

Construction worker in Hoima town, Uganda. More infrastructure and oil sector investment could boost growth (photo: JAMES AKENA/REUTERS/Newscom).

Drought, regional conflict, and slow credit growth are taking their toll on Uganda's economy. While per-capita growth has hovered around 5 percent for the last 20 years, the IMFs latest economic assessment shows it has fallen to 1/2 percent. In this podcast, the report's coauthor Axel Schimmelpfennig, says some strategic infrastructure investment and Uganda's untapped oil reserves could help turn things around.

Read the transcript

Axel Schimmelpfennig, IMF Mission Chief for Uganda.

Growth in the Shadows: Sub-Saharan Africa’s Informal Economy

June 28, 2017

Makeshift bicycle repair shop in Quelimane, Mozambique. The informal economy is a key component of most economies in sub-Saharan Africa (photo: Ulrich Doering imageBroker/Newscom).

By 2035 sub-Saharan Africa will have more working-age people than the rest of the world’s regions combined. This growing workforce bulge will have to be met with jobs, but the region remains one of the toughest places to do business. Meanwhile, small-unregistered household businesses provide up to 90 percent of jobs outside of agriculture. The IMF’s latest Regional Economic Outlook for sub-Saharan Africa devotes an entire chapter on the informal economy, and in this podcast we speak with economist Ali Mansoor, coauthor of the study.

Ali Mansoor, IMF Division Chief for West Africa, and coauthor of the report.

Tayo Oviosu: Technology Draws More Nigerians Into Banking Fold

June 16, 2017

Tayo Oviosu, speaking at IMF World-Bank Spring meetings panel on Digital Financial Inclusion (IMF photo).

More than two billion people worldwide are without bank accounts, and only one in three adults in sub-Saharan Africa have access to any type of financial services. But Tayo Oviosu, Founder of Nigeria’s leading mobile payment platform says financial technology—or fintech, is making access to finance possible for millions of un-banked Nigerians.

Tayo Oviosu, Founder and CEO of Paga, Nigeria’s mobile payment platform.

Ian Goldin: Disruptive Changes That Will Transform the World

June 07, 2017

Ian Goldin says the present is a contest between the bright and dark sides of discovery (IMF photo).

While science and technology propel us into the future at what some would describe as breakneck speed, Oxford University’s Ian Goldin says we should draw from the past because we’ve been here before. In this podcast, Goldin compares the social division, political extremism and insecurity of the first Age of Discovery in the 15th Century, with what is happening today.

Ian Goldin, founding director of the Oxford Martin School, and Professor of Globalization and Development at Oxford University.

Christine Lagarde: Millennials and the Future of Work

May 31, 2017

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde (IMF photo)

While millions of young people enter the labor market every year, the chance of landing a traditional full-time job with benefits are getting slim. Global youth unemployment is on the rise and many young people are opting to work in what’s known as the sharing economy. In this podcast, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde shares her thoughts about policies that might help today’s youth better adapt to the changing nature of work.

Read Christine Lagarde’s Straight Talk about millennials and the future of work, in the June 2017 edition of Finance and Development magazine.

Christine Lagarde, IMF Managing Director

Mohamed El-Erian: New Life for the SDR?

May 26, 2017

Mohamed El-Erian, speaking at IMF World-Bank Spring Meetings (IMF photo).

The IMF’s Special Drawing Rights have failed to gain real traction in the international monetary system, but Mohamed El-Erian, Chief Economic Advisor at Allianz and former IMF Deputy Director, believes a greater role for the SDR in global markets could help strengthen the world economy.

Mohamed El-Erian, Chief Economic Advisor at Allianz, and former IMF Deputy Director.

Patrick Murck: The Changing Face of Financial Services

May 12, 2017

Patrick Murck, speaking at the FinTech and the Transormation of Financial Services seminar during 2017 IMF World-Bank Spring meetings (IMF photo)

FinTech—or financial technology—is poised to revolutionize how the world does business. It could open new kinds of markets to many more people, but it could also threaten our financial privacy or make illicit financial transactions easier. In this podcast, Fintech expert Patrick Murck describes the coming transformation and its pitfalls.

Patrick Murck, fellow at the Harvard Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, and a Special Counsel at Cooley LLP.

Sub-Saharan Africa: Restarting the Growth Engine

May 08, 2017

Shopfront in Kenya. Strong business environment helps economic diversification (photo: Gettyimages/Harry Hook).

The IMF's latest regional economic outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa shows growth has fallen to its lowest level in twenty years. In this podcast, co-author Céline Allard, says while some countries like Senegal and Kenya continue to experience growth rates higher than 6 percent, growth has slowed for two thirds of countries in the region bringing down average growth in 2016 to 1.4 percent.

Céline Allard, Head of the Regional Studies Division in the IMF’s African Department

Hal Varian: The Productivity Paradox

April 28, 2017

Google’s Chief Economist, Hal Varian at Productivity in the Age of Fewer, Older Workers Spring Meetings seminar (IMF photo)

The labor force 30 years from now will look very different as working-age populations in advanced economies start to shrink. While some today worry they’ll lose their jobs to robots, economists like Google’s Hal Varian, wonder if technology will boost productivity enough to compensate for the shifting demographics. Varian, and Harvard’s David Canning, discussed the topic during an IMF World-Bank Spring Meetings seminar earlier this month.

Hal Varian, Google’s Chief Economist and an Emeritus Professor at UC Berkeley.
David Canning, Professor of Population Sciences, Economics and Intl Health, Harvard University, Department of Global Health and Population.

IMF World Economic Outlook

April 18, 2017

IMF Economic Counselor, Maurice Obstfeld (photo: IMF)

The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook projects global growth at 3.5 percent in 2017 and 3.6 percent in 2018. In this podcast, IMF Chief Economist Maurice Obstfeld says global growth is gaining momentum.

Maurice Obstfeld, IMF Economic Counselor

Bank Capital: How Much is Enough?

April 14, 2017

Large international banks are now required to hold 15.5 percent of capital under the Basel III. (photo: Vennem/Newscom)

The 2008 global financial crisis exposed the vulnerability of banks that do not hold enough capital. The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision has since revised capital requirements for banks. In this podcast, we ask IMF economist Lev Ratnovski, how much capital banks need to hold to avert another crisis.

Lev Ratnovski, Senior Economist in the IMF’s Research Department.

Muna AbuSulayman: Gender Equity in Saudi Arabia

April 04, 2017

World Economic Forum ranked Muna AbuSulayman one of the most influential Muslim women for her work in media, gender, and education (photo: WEF/ Norbert Schiller).

Muna AbuSulayman, is founder and co-host of the most popular social issues program on Arab television. Kalam Nawaem tackles controversial topics and has been pushing social boundaries in the region for 15 years. In this podcast, AbuSulayman says Arab women should be free to achieve their goals without cultural or economic barriers.

Muna AbuSulayman, Co-founder of, a news hub for Arab youth and women.

John Evans: Navigating Today’s Labor Market

March 24, 2017

John Evans, head of the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (photo: MAYA VIDON/EPA/Newscom)

Labor unions around the world are having to adapt to a fast changing labor market. John Evans heads the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD, and represents some 65 million organized workers worldwide. In this podcast, Evans says workers are caught in the middle of rapid technological change and slow global growth.
Read Transcript

John Evans, General Secretary of the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD

Jamie Drummond: Invest in Africa or Else

March 15, 2017

ONE co-founder Jamie Drummond, says Africa’s population boom presents an opportunity for the region and the world. (photo: Mark Doyle / Splash News/Newscom)

As the Group of Twenty finance ministers and central bank governors meet in Germany this week, policymakers are looking at ways to increase investment in Africa. ONE Campaign’s Jamie Drummond says investing into the education, employment and empowerment of this generation of Africans will help create jobs and curb migration into Europe.
Read Transcript

Jamie Drummond, Co-Founder and Executive Director of The ONE Campaign

Hilma Mote: Africa Must Make Women a Priority

March 08, 2017

Hilma Mote, African Regional Organization of the International Trade Union Confederation (photo: Boris Buchholz / IPPNW).

Global trade union leaders gathered at the IMF in February to discuss how workers are being impacted by the changing global economy. In this podcast, Hilma Mote, of the African Region’s International Trade Union Confederation talks about the challenges African youth, especially women are facing with the continent’s rapidly growing labor force.

Read the transcript

Hilma Mote, Executive Director of the Africa Labor research and education Institute, ITUC-Africa.

Eric Hanushek: More One Knows, Faster One Grows

March 03, 2017

Eric Hanushek, economist at Stanford University, says more skills lead to stronger growth. (Juan Lopez/La Nacion de Argentina/Newscom).

There is a strong connection between human capital and economic growth, and in this podcast, Eric Hanushek says societies that invest a lot in the cognitive skills of their people grow significantly faster. Hanushek studies the relationship between education policy and economic outcomes at Stanford University.

Read Transcript

Eric Hanushek, Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University.

Alec Ross on The Industries of the Future

February 24, 2017

Author Alec Ross says data is the raw material of the information age (photo: picture alliance / Tobias Hase/Newscom).

In this podcast we speak with author Alec Ross about his new book The Industries of the Future. Ross says 90 percent of the world’s data has been produced in the last two years, so those businesses that own or harvest a meaning from all this data will be leading the pack. Ross has served as Senior Advisor for Innovation to the US Secretary of State.

Read Transcript

Alec Ross, Distinguished Senior Fellow at Johns Hopkins University.

Sharan Burrow, on Regaining Trust

February 17, 2017

Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation speaking at IMF, Washington, DC (IMF photo)

Every two years, the IMF and World-Bank invites global labor union leaders to discuss the global economy and the implications for the labor force. In this podcast, Sharan Burrow, head of the world’s largest trade union federation, says collective action is needed to help better distribute the benefits of growth, if institutions are to regain trust from working people.

Read Transcript

Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation

Barry Eichengreen: Asia’s Ascent and the Global Monetary System

February 08, 2017

Barry Eichengreen, speaking about Asia in the global economy at 2016 IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings (IMF photo).

With Asia’s recent growth comes a growing responsibility within the global economy. In this podcast, Barry Eichengreen, Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley, breaks down the weight of that responsibility and how Asia can rise to fulfill it.

Barry Eichengreen, George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

Mining for Revenues: Alexandra Readhead on Transfer Pricing

January 31, 2017

Open pit gold mine, Tanzania. New report says mineral-rich African countries losing millions in potential tax revenue from mining industry (photo: Karl Schoemaker-Work At Play).

While many African countries have enjoyed significant revenues from the mining industry in recent years, a new study published by the Natural Resource Governance Institute suggests tax revenues from mining could be much higher if transfer pricing rules were enforced. In this podcast, we speak with the report’s author Alexandra Readhead.

Alexandra Readhead, independent consultant and author of Preventing Tax Base Erosion in Africa

The Cost of Corruption for the Young

January 18, 2017

Sergejus Muravjovas speaking about impact of corruption on youth at 2016 IMF World-Bank Annual meetings (IMF photo).

Corruption, in its many forms, affects people from every walk of life, in every country. While it does not discriminate based on age, young people are affected by corruption in ways that can follow them throughout their careers. In this podcast, anti-corruption leader Sergejus Muravjovas, talks about the ways in which youth are fighting back.

Sergejus Muravjovas, Executive Director at Transparency International Lithuania and founder of

Thomas Friedman on Warp Speed Digital Globalization

January 11, 2017

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman presenting new book to economists and development professionals at IMF (IMF photo).

New York Times columnist and best-selling author Thomas Friedman, says our lives are being transformed in so many realms at once- it’s dizzying. In this podcast, Friedman talks about his new book, Thank You for Being Late, An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations.

Thomas Friedman, New York Times columnist and best-selling author.

Julie Delahanty on Gender-Conscious Budgets

January 05, 2017

Julie Delahanty, Oxfam Canada (photo: Women’s Executive Network).

Julie Delahanty has done extensive work on the disenfranchisement of women due to the lack of equal opportunity. Delahanty is the Executive Director of Oxfam Canada, and joined a panel discussion during the IMF conference on Reducing the Gender Gap. In this podcast, Delahanty says vulnerable women are the most negatively affected by rising inequality.

Julie Delahanty, Executive Director of Oxfam Canada

Douglas Irwin on Trade: Reality vs Perception

December 19, 2016

Douglas Irwin, John Sloan Dickey Third Century Professor in Social Sciences, Department of Economics at Dartmouth College (El Pais Photos/Newscom).

Who benefits from free trade and who doesn’t? The realities don’t always match people’s perceptions. In this podcast, economist and free trade expert Douglas Irwin addresses some of the controversies. Irwin participated in a seminar entitled Making Trade an Engine of Growth for All at this year’s IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings.

Douglas Irwin, John Sloan Dickey Third Century Professor in Social Sciences in the Department of Economics at Dartmouth College

Ravi Kanbur: Political Dimensions of Data and Statistics

December 09, 2016

Ravi Kanbur delivering keynote speech at Fourth IMF Statistical Forum, November 2016 (IMF photo)

Ravi Kanbur says statistics are fundamentally political in nature and in import. Kanbur is Professor of Economics at Cornell University and gave the keynote speech at the Fourth IMF Statistical forum on Statistics for Inclusive Growth, held in November 2016. In this podcast, Kanbur says data doesn’t always reflect the reality on the ground when it comes to poverty and inequality.

Ravi Kanbur, T. H. Lee Professor of World Affairs and Professor of Economics at Cornell University

Harold James on Globalization: New Concept Old Reality

November 30, 2016

Immigrants arriving at Ellis Island, New York, in the early 20th century.

Globalization is a recent term, but the internationalization of markets, people, ideas, and cultures is nothing new. In this podcast, IMF historian Harold James, talks about how the past might help guide us into the future. James is Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University, and author of New Concept Old Reality published in the December 2016 edition of Finance and Development magazine.

Harold James, Professor of History and International Affairs at Princeton University and IMF Historian

Esther Duflo: Poverty Not Only Lack of Money

November 18, 2016

Esther Duflo, Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (BALTEL/SIPA/Newscom).

Esther Duflo, Professor of Development Economics at MIT, co-founded The Poverty Lab to find innovative approaches to poverty alleviation. In this podcast, Duflo says all economic and social dimensions of poverty must be considered in order to effectively address the problem. Duflo presented the 2016 Richard Goode lecture at the IMF earlier this month.

Esther Duflo, Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The Economics of Natural Disasters in Sub-Saharan Africa

November 16, 2016

Flood victims make their way through flood waters to be evacuated in Tambara, Mozambique. Sub-Saharan Africa is region hardest hit by natural disasters. (Themba Hadebe/epa/Newscom)

The IMF’s latest Regional Economic Outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa dedicates an entire chapter on what a drought, an earthquake or a pandemic can do to a country’s economy. In this podcast, lead authors Marshall Mills and Vimal Thakoor say natural disasters have a much bigger impact in sub-Saharan Africa than any other region.

Marshall Mills, Economist and Mission Chief for Madagascar, IMF African Department.
Vimal Thakoor, Economist, IMF African Department.

Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda: Make Economies Work for Women

November 07, 2016

Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda at IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings. Gumbonzvanda says better policies would allow more women to work (IMF photo).

While the benefits of expanding women’s participation in the economy are clear, women around the globe continue to face barriers. In this podcast, Action Aid’s Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda says women bear a disproportionate responsibility for unpaid care work, and ill-thought-out policies often add to that burden. Gumbonzvanda joined a panel on Making Macroeconomics Work for Women at the IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings.

Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda, International Board Chair for Action Aid

One-on-One with Christine Lagarde, Featuring Michael Lewis

November 02, 2016

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, and author Michael Lewis during 2016 IMF-World-Bank Annual Meetings (IMF photo).

In this podcast, IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, and best-selling author Michael Lewis (The Big Short), reflect on lessons learned from the financial crisis and other issues facing the world economy. The discussion took place before a live audience during the IMF World-Bank Annual meetings last month.

Christine Lagarde: IMF Managing Director.
Michael Lewis: Author, columnist and financial journalist.

Ray Kurzweil: Intelligent Machines Are Your Friend

October 27, 2016

Caption: Ray Kurzweil, Inventor, futurist and author. Kurzweil says artificial intelligence is creating more creative employment opportunities (Frederic Neema/Polaris/Newscom).

In this podcast, inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil talks about how artificial intelligence is helping overcome human limitations and creating better-paying jobs. Kurzweil participated in a panel discussion entitled Technology, Innovation, and Inclusive Growth, during the 2016 IMF World-Bank Annual Meetings.

Ray Kurzweil, Inventor, futurist, and author.

Abebe Aemro Selassie: Sub-Saharan Africa Growth Lowest in 20 Years

October 25, 2016

Abebe Aemro Selassie, IMF African Department Director says sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing multispeed growth (IMF photo).

The IMF's latest regional economic outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa shows growth at its lowest level in more than 20 years. But in this podcast, the African Department’s new Director, Abebe Aemro Selassie, says it’s a mixed story of struggling oil-exporters and strong performers.

Abebe Aemro Selassie, Director of the IMF’s African Department

Ghana: IMF Approves Third $116.2m Disbursement

October 04, 2016

Drying cocoa beans in Enchi, Ghana. Despite slump in commodity prices Ghana’s 2015 current account deficit was lower than expected at 7.5% of GDP (photo: Thierry Gouegnon/Reuters/Newscom)

Ghana’s economy—once a model for growth in West Africa, took a turn for the worse in 2012. It’s been getting help from the IMF under a 3-year program known as the Extended Credit Facility, and the IMF board has just approved another US$116m. Under the arrangement, Ghana could receive more than US$900m if all targets are met. In this podcast, Joël Toujas-Bernaté, IMF mission chief for Ghana, says the country is making good progress.

Joël Toujas-Bernaté, IMF Mission Chief for Ghana

IMF World Economic Outlook

October 04, 2016

IMF Chief Economic Counselor, Maurice Obstfeld (photo: IMF)

The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook projects global growth at 3.1 percent in 2016 and 3.4 percent in 2017. In this podcast, IMF Chief Economist Maurice Obstfeld says growth has been too slow for too long.

Maurice Obstfeld, IMF Chief Economic Counselor

Ethiopia: Drought, Low Commodities Dampen Growth

October 04, 2016

Tradesman works on metro rail system in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. First of its kind on the continent, the electrified light rail transit system was built by a Chinese railway company.

While Ethiopia has been experiencing strong growth since the early 2000s, the IMF’s latest review of the country’s economy says low commodity prices and a drought have put growth levels well below 10 percent for the first time in a decade. In this podcast, we speak with Julio Escolano, IMF Mission Chief for Ethiopia, who oversaw the writing of the report.

Julio Escolano, IMF Mission Chief for Ethiopia.

Refugee Crisis Global Challenge, Kyung-wha Kang

September 16, 2016

Kyung-Wha Kang, Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator at the UN. Kang says refugee crisis has global implications (Luiz Rampelotto/EuropaNewswire).

More than a million migrants and refugees made their way to Europe last year, 350K from Syria alone. A recent IMF study says people fleeing conflict areas in the Middle-East and North Africa has brought about the biggest refugee crisis since World War 2. In this podcast, the UN’s Kyung-Wha Kang says the 1951 UN convention for refugees is no longer enough.

Kyung-Wha Kang, Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator at the United Nations.

Creative Industries a Development Opportunity

September 09, 2016

Apple store in China. Digital music sales generated $15 billion in 2015 (Imaginechina/AP Images).

The United Nations estimates the global creative economy in 2011 generated more than $600 billion. In this podcast we speak with Patrick Kabanda, who says a country’s cultural wealth presents a huge development opportunity. Kabanda is author of Music Going for a Song published in the September 2016 edition of Finance & Development Magazine.

Patrick Kabanda, Consultant for the office of the Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at the World Bank

Robots, Growth, and Inequality

August 31, 2016

Robot at 2016 World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images).

As robotic technology becomes more sophisticated, robots could soon become perfect substitutes for human labor. In this podcast, IMF economist Andy Berg says the robot revolution could lead to greater inequality. Berg is coauthor of Robots, Growth, and Inequality published in the September 2016 edition of Finance & Development Magazine.

Andy Berg, Deputy Director of the IMF’s Institute for Capacity Development

Klaus Rudischhauser on Taxes and Development

August 26, 2016

Gold pieces in the Department of Mines, Eritrea. Multinational companies working in developing countries often reap big profits and pay little tax (THOMAS MUKOYA/REUTERS/Newscom).

Taxes are what governments rely on to provide the public goods and services that support economic growth. In this podcast, DG DEVCO’s Klaus Rudischhauser, says some countries with millions of inhabitants have only a few hundred tax payers. Rudischhauser participated in a Spring Meeting’s seminar on Capacity Development entitled Collect More & Spend Better

Klaus Rudischhauser, Deputy Director-General of the European Commission’s International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO)

Madagascar Gets a Boost

August 19, 2016

Harvesting vanilla, Madagascar. Vanilla production is highly labor-intensive and Madagascar is second largest producer in the world (photo: LYDIE/SIPA/Newscom).

The IMF says Madagascar has built a good track record since it’s reengagement in 2014, showing the country is capable of sustaining recent reforms that have improved its economic outlook. In this podcast, Mission Chief, Marshall Mills talks about a new IMF program for Madagascar that includes US$ 310 million over three years.

Marshall Mills, IMF Mission Chief for Madagascar

Poor Economics with Abhijit Banerjee

August 12, 2016

Living in poverty, Tsunza Village, Kenya. Fuel and water subsidies benefit rich more than poor says Abhijit Banerjee. (photo: Ignacio Hennigs).

Abhijit Banerjee, has worked in dozens of countries trying to better understand the economics of poverty. He argues anti-poverty policies often fail because of inadequate understanding of the decisions poor people make. Banerjee Participated in a seminar on Sustainable Economic Development during the IMF World-Bank Spring meetings. In this podcast, we discuss why so little is known about a billion poor people in the world.

Abhijit Banerjee, Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and author of Poor Economics, A radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty

Winnie Byanyima on Women in Global Economy

July 28, 2016

Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International (IMF photo)

It’s vital to address the economic challenges of women and girls in order to fix the economic challenges of nations. This was the main theme of a seminar called Getting Down to Business: Women, Work, and the Global Economy, held during the IMF/World Bank Spring Meetings. In this podcast, Oxfam International’s Winnie Byanyima talks about the increasing statistical evidence that shows women's contributions to the global economy are invaluable.

Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International

Currency and Power with Benjamin Cohen

July 26, 2016

Traders on the floor of New York Stock Exchange. Depth of US financial market makes US dollar attractive to investors around the world (BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS/Newscom).

Monetary rivalry is a fact of life in the world economy, says Benjamin Cohen, professor of International Political Economy at the University of California and author of Currency Power: Understanding Monetary Rivalry. In this podcast, Cohen explains why currencies become internationalized, and examines the relationship between world currencies and State power.

Benjamin Cohen, Professor of International Political Economy at the University of California

South Africa: Urgent Need for Policy Reforms

July 07, 2016

Builders and painters wait for work on a roadside in Cape Town. Unemployment in South Africa is among the highest in the world (photo: Nic Bothma/EPA/ Newscom).

South Africa faces significant challenges and needs decisive action to revive growth, the IMF said in its latest economic review. While the report acknowledges considerable economic and social progress, it shows income inequality and unemployment are unacceptably high. In this podcast, we speak with Laura Papi, IMF Mission Chief for South Africa.

Laura Papi, IMF Mission Chief for South Africa

When Global Banks Become Less Global

June 30, 2016

Global banks are doing less business in smaller countries making remittances more difficult (photo: Kacper Pempel/ Reuters/REUTERS/Newscom).

Many of the world’s bigger banks are reevaluating their relationships with banks in smaller, sometimes riskier countries, making it harder for businesses and people to move money across borders. The process is commonly known as De-Risking. IMF Staff have recently published a research paper entitled The Withdrawal of Correspondent Banking Relationships. In this podcast, we speak with coauthor Yan Liu.

Yan Liu, Assistant General Counsel in the IMF’s legal Department.

Ian Bremmer, on Geopolitics of Refugee Crisis

June 17, 2016

Ian Bremmer, President of Eurasia Group (IMF photo)

Europe is struggling to cope with millions of asylum seekers from conflict zones in the Middle East. In this podcast, Ian Bremmer, president of the global political risk research firm Eurasia Group, says the biggest challenges behind the refugee crisis are more political than economic. Bremmer participated in a seminar entitled Conflicts and the Refugee Crisis: An International Call for Action at the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings in April.

Ian Bremmer, President and Founder of Eurasia Group, a global political risk research and consulting firm.

Collect More - Spend Better, Eric Postel

June 09, 2016

Informal street trader sells maize near capital Lilongwe, Malawi. Some countries have very few taxpayers on the books (REUTERS/Mike Hutchings/File Photo).

Billions of uncollected tax dollars in developing countries could be used to lift more people out of poverty. In this podcast, Eric Postel, USAID’s Associate Administrator explains how redoubled efforts to improve tax systems worldwide are making a difference. Postel participated in seminar entitled Collect More & Spend Better at the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings in April.

Eric Postel, Associate Administrator at the U.S. Agency for International Development

Steven Radelet, Africa’s Rise—Interrupted?

June 03, 2016

Absa Cape Epic mountain bike race, Cape Town, South Africa; growth in the region is an uphill battle (photo: Ralph Hirschberger/dpa/Corbis)

If high commodity prices alone drove recent advances in Africa, the prospects for further gains seem dim. But in this podcast, Steven Radelet, says the reality is more complex, and the outlook is more varied than many now suggest. Radelet’s article, Africa’s Rise- Interrupted? is published in the June 2016 issue of Finance and Development magazine.

Steven Radelet, holds the Donald F. McHenry Chair in Global Human Development, and is Director of the Global Human Development Program at Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.

A Fork in the Road, China’s Relationship with Africa

May 26, 2016

Chinese workers from the Zhongyuan Petroleum Exploration Bureau (ZPEB) of Sinopec and Sudanese workers drill an oil well in South Sudan (F&D June 2016).

Slumping Chinese demand has African economies scrambling to find alternate sources of revenue. In this podcast, we speak with Roger Nord, Deputy Director of the African Department in the IMF, and coauthor of A Fork in the Road, published in the June 2016 issue of Finance and Development magazine.

Roger Nord, IMF Deputy Director, African Department

Refugee Crisis Taking Toll on Jordan, Imad Fakhoury

May 20, 2016

Syrian refugees wait to cross to a camp in Jordan. The wave of refugees is costing Jordan an average of $2 billion per year. (Xinhua/Mohammad Abu Ghosh)

Of the 5 million people fleeing civil war in Syria, more than a million have ended up in Jordan. The refugee crisis has hit host countries like Jordan hard. Imad Fakhoury, Jordan’s minister of planning, joined a seminar about Conflicts and the Refugee Crisis, at the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings. In this podcast, Fakhoury talks about the impacts of the refugee crisis on Jordan.

Imad Fakhoury, Jordan’s Minister of Planning and International Cooperation

Kemi Adeosun, on Nigeria’s Dwindling Oil Revenues

May 13, 2016

Kemi Adeosun, Nigeria’s Finance Minister, IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings (IMF photo)

As Nigeria’s Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun is charged with navigating Africa’s largest oil producer through the biggest oil price slump in decades. In this podcast, Adeosun talks about the need to diversify government revenues, and how inclusive growth can stem rising insecurity. Adeosun joined a panel discussion about sub-Saharan Africa during the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings.

Kemi Adeosun, Nigeria’s Finance Minister

Weakening Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa Calls for Policy Reset

May 03, 2016

Road building project in Marsabit, Kenya. While commodity slump takes toll, some countries benefit from infrastructure investments (photo: Zhou Xiaoxiong/Xinhua Press/Corbis)

The IMF's latest regional economic outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa predicts a second difficult year as the region is hit by multiple shocks. In this Podcast, we speak with the IMF`s Celine Allard, who oversaw the writing of the report.

Céline Allard, Head of the Regional Studies Division in the IMF’s African Department