Latest News, Publications and Workshops

Latest Publications

Quality of life: validation of an instrument and analysis of relationships between dimensions

Talita Greyling

The conventional approach to measuring quality of life was centred on the use of income measures such as GDP. There has, however, been growing acceptance of the limitations of this approach and of the need for a more multifaceted measure of quality of life. For example, the Report by the Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress states, “[t]he emphasis should be shifted from measuring economic production to measuring people’s wellbeing” (Stiglitz et al. 2009:12). People’s wellbeing reaches much wider than income and includes multiple dimensions, such as health, education, housing and social relationships.

Sanctioned Quotas vs Information Provisioning for Community Wildlife Conservation in Zimbabwe: A Framed Field Experiment Approach

Herbert Ntuli

Local communities in Africa benefit from protected areas through a number of activities such as grazing their livestock and revenues gained from touristic activities. These two activities are not independent because the feeding habits of large herbivores such as elephants prevent bush encroachment thus maintaining healthy grasslands.. In addition, the way the local community manages the elephants can substantially influence their reproduction. Both the grasslands which provides pastures for their livestock and elephants could substantially and drastically deteriorate due to poor management. If the elephant population drops too low, it would become harder for them to reproduce. Too few elephants would then result in bush encroachment seriously preventing domestic animals from grazing. This development can result in permanent changes from an elephant-rich grassland to an elephant-poor bushy area, which holds much fewer ecosystem services for the local community. Would the community spontaneously succeed in maintaining the elephant stock and grassland quality at a satisfying level or not? What kind of policy intervention would help reach the desired outcome? Should the authorities inform the community about these dynamics? Should they instead introduce a quota, a lower limit for the elephant stock that if trespassed would be sanctioned with punishment in the form of a fine to pay?

Efficiency in South African water utilities: a comparison of estimates from DEA, SFA and StoNED

Climate change has brought renewed and increasing attention to the productivity and efficiency of the water sector. This has stimulated interest, which has manifested itself in the increased application of statistical tools to measure the productivity and efficiency of water utilities. Policymakers in developed countries are already making use of statistical analyses of water systems for determining productivity and efficiency.

Order flow and rand/dollar exchange rate dynamic

Aadila Hoosain, Alta Joubert, Alain Kabundi

This study investigates the impact of order flow on the rand/dollar exchange rate over the short and long term. It uses a hybrid model which combines microeconomic and macroeconomic determinants of the exchange rate in the short and long term. The analysis uses monthly series from January 2004 to December 2016. We find that order flow explains movements in the exchange rate, both in the short and in the long term. Consistent with the literature, our results show that the rand/dollar exchange rate reacts to fundamental variables only in the long term. Unlike Meese and Rogoff (1983), who postulate that the best way to estimate the exchange rate over the short-term is with a random walk model, our study shows that we can exploit information from the microstructure approach to explain short-term dynamics in the rand.


Who benefits from being self-employed in urban Ghana

This paper explores the earnings gap between the self-employed and wage earners in urban Ghana. This is important in understanding the drivers of inequality, we hypothesise that heterogeneity in informal sector earnings will have implications for the income gap between self-employed individuals and wage earners. This heterogeneity in earnings will be concealed at the mean. However, the information about who benefits and who is penalized in the informal sector can be important from the policy perspective.

Latest Workshops

Skills Development

Monday, July 3, 2017 to Friday, July 7, 2017

Call for Application for Skills Development Training in Econometrics

The ERSA is pleased to invite applications for the Skill Development Training Programme in basic Econometrics for academics and postgraduate students (masters and PhD) with limited training in Econometrics and quantitative methods. The skills development initiative is in line with ERSA’s objective to deepen economic research capacity and to train young economists in Southern Africa.

7th Annual Meeting of the African Economic History Network: Innovation and the African Past

Wednesday, October 25, 2017 to Friday, October 27, 2017

The African Economic History Network, in association with the Laboratory for the Economics Africa's Past at Stellenbosch University, Harvard Univeristy's Center for African Studies and Economic Research Southern Africa announces a Call for Papers.

Lecture Series in Economic Theory: "Asymmetric Information in Markets and Organizations"

Monday, March 14, 2016 to Tuesday, March 15, 2016
In part 1 of this lecture, we are going to introduce the basic set-up of credence goods markets and discuss how markets should be designed to provide the right incentives for experts and their customers. The theoretical analysis will be complemented by the discussion of evidence of expert behaviour and market outcomes from empirical as well experimental studies. 
In part 2 of the lecture, the emphasis will be on information disclosure by interested parties and evidence provision by intermediaries.