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How Important is Infrastructure? A Look at its Economic Impact in a Globalized World

Past Event

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How Important is Infrastructure? A Look at its Economic Impact in a Globalized World

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How Important is Infrastructure? A Look at its Economic Impact in a Globalized World

Although the conventional wisdom on infrastructure is that it is a key ingredient in a country’s economic success, the relationship between infrastructure and growth is unclear and often misunderstood. Exactly how important is infrastructure to a country’s economy and how is it measured? Should a larger role for financing these investments be given to the private sector, particularly in developing nations?

On Thursday, June 10, the Economic Studies and Global Economy and Development programs at Brookings hosted an event to discuss the nature and role of infrastructure, including rigorous economic analysis to discern to what extent infrastructure can boost overall productivity and raise living standards. Speakers reviewed the most efficient ways to finance infrastructure spending as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the public and private sectors in infrastructure provision and management. Karen Dynan, Brookings vice president and co-director of Economic Studies, welcomed participants. Presentations by national and international experts were followed by a panel discussion led by Nonresident Senior Fellow Warwick McKibbin.

After the program, panelists took audience questions.

Agenda

Welcome

Presentation: Key Issues in the Economics of Infrastructure

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Timo Henckel

Research Fellow, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic AnalysisAustralian National University

Presentation: The Slowly Growing Case for Infrastructure Privatization

Presentation: Evaluation and Delivery of Infrastructure – Theory and Practice

Presentation: The Returns to Infrastructure: Is Infrastructure Capital Productive?

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Luis Servén

Research Manager, Macroeconomics and Growth in the Development Research GroupThe World Bank

Presentation: Dynamics of Infrastructure and Development

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Douglas Brooks

Principal Economist, Macroeconomics and FinanceResearch Division, Economics and Research DepartmentAsian Development Bank

Panel Discussion

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Timo Henckel

Research Fellow, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic AnalysisAustralian National University

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Luis Servén

Research Manager, Macroeconomics and Growth in the Development Research GroupThe World Bank

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Douglas Brooks

Principal Economist, Macroeconomics and FinanceResearch Division, Economics and Research DepartmentAsian Development Bank

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