SOURCE: Milken Institute

July 16, 2015 09:10 ET

Milken Institute Review: Harvard's Claudia Goldin on Achieving Gender Pay Equality -- and More

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - July 16, 2015) - Claudia Goldin, the Henry Lee Professor of Economics at Harvard University, explains why the gender gap in pay persists in spite of decisive gains in women's skills and experience. "Like many others, I think convergence is possible," she writes in the new issue of the Milken Institute's quarterly journal of economic policy. "However, the solution does not have to involve government intervention, and it does not depend on the improvement of women's bargaining skills or heightened will to compete."

Also in this issue:

Tomas Philipson of the University of Chicago and the Milken Institute proposes two new sorts of financial derivatives to manage risk and increase capital for drug development: "The first I call an FDA swap, which in many ways imitates the form and function of the credit default swaps already widely used to hedge risk in bond markets. The second I call an FDA annuity, which hedges against approval delays by paying the investors an agreed-upon sum during the life of the testing process."

Frank Rose, a senior fellow at Columbia University, turns a gimlet eye on the "attention economy" -- and, in particular, on how efforts to measure the impact of Internet content are undermining the medium. "Metrics have so distorted the economics of the Internet that we find ourselves awash in information that is useless, even predatory," he writes, "while information that actually deserves our attention often goes begging (in some cases, literally)."

Larry Fisher, a former business reporter for The New York Times, decides that the future of hydrogen-powered cars is (almost) now. "Head-to-head," Fisher says, "hydrogen may prove a match for battery-powered cars. Fuel cell vehicles deliver the same instant torque, seamless power delivery and near silence that delight drivers of Teslas and Nissan Leafs alike, with the added advantage of 300 mile range and fueling that takes 5 minutes."

Pallavi Aiyar a Jakarta-based journalist, and Chin Hwee Tan of Apollo Global Management argue that comparisons between India and China distract from India's more relevant match-up. "A list of the most fundamental challenges confronting India today could just as well be Indonesia's," they write. "Both nations need to boost manufacturing competiveness to create the millions of jobs required to ensure their young and growing populations become a demographic dividend, rather than a Malthusian disaster. Both have governments that must attract foreign investment and fix creaky infrastructure, even as they assuage protectionist lobbies and battle entrenched corruption."

Thomas Healey, a former assistant secretary of the Treasury, and Catherine Reilly, a graduate student at Harvard's Kennedy School, outline the impending global pension disaster and what could be done to save the Baby Boomers' bacon. "Despite the political and economic complications of changing entrenched public pension systems," they say, "extensive reforms have in fact been achieved by a small circle of progressive nations. For most countries, though, the move will be considerably more difficult. To stand any chance of survival over the long term, sponsors must step up now."

Marsha Vande Berg at the Harvard Law Program on International Financial Systems reviews China's current struggle to rekindle growth without losing momentum on reform. "Some way, some day (preferably soon) the economy must be rebalanced in ways that diversify output and put services in place as the lead driver," she concludes. "That will require (among other things) more sophisticated regulation of an economy that now awkwardly mixes ebullient private markets with what might be called crony socialism."

Alan Sanderson of the University of Chicago and John Siegfried of Vanderbilt University expose the inequity and inefficiency of the NCAA's monopoly on college sports. "Americans inadvertently created a monster long ago when they integrated big-time spectator sports with higher education," they write. "Taming the beast -- forcing it to live by the rules we've set for other commercial enterprises -- will not be a walk in the park."

Find the latest Milken Institute Review here:

About the Milken Institute
A nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank, the Milken Institute believes in the power of capital markets to solve urgent social and economic challenges. Its mission is to improve lives around the world by advancing innovative economic and policy solutions that create jobs, widen access to capital and enhance health.

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