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Daily Archives: June 28, 2014

Specification and Estimation of Gravity Models: A Review of the Issues in the Literature

Olanike Kareem, Fatima and Kareem, Idowu Olayinka, Specification and Estimation of Gravity Models: A Review of the Issues in the Literature (June 2014). Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies Research Paper No. RSCAS 2014/74. Available  for download at SSRN:

The gravity model has become an efficient tool in the analysis of international economic relations due to its theoretical derivation and ability to explain these relationships. The contending issue now is the appropriate specification and estimation techniques. This paper presents a review of current controversy surrounding the specification and estimation of gravity model with zero trade data, which we called ‘gravity modeling estimation debate’. Different positions in the literature were enunciated with the view of bringing the readers to the frontier of knowledge in this area of empirical strategies revolving on the gravity modeling in the presence of zero trade. By and large, the identification of the most appropriate estimation technique in the presence of zero trade is still an empirical issue. This paper deduced that the choice of the estimation technique should largely be based on the research questions, the model specification and the choice of data to be used for the analysis.”

Juries and Prior Convictions: Managing the Demise of the Prior Conviction Exception to Apprendi

King, Nancy J., Juries and Prior Convictions: Managing the Demise of the Prior Conviction Exception to Apprendi (June 1, 2014). Southern Methodist University Law Review, Forthcoming. Available for download at SSRN: “This essay offers a menu of procedural alternatives for coping with the potential, some would say inevitable, abandonment of the prior conviction exception to… Continue Reading

The 2014 State New Economy Index

  Robert D. Atkinson and Adams Nager: “The conventional view of the U.S. economy, and of state economies, is as static entities which change principally in size (growing in normal times and contracting during recessions). But in fact, state economies are constantly evolving complex ecosystems. Indeed, U.S. state economies of 2014 are not just larger but… Continue Reading

At a Tipping Point: Education, Learning and Libraries

“OCLC Market Research teams have been studying the habits and perceptions of information consumers for a decade. In this latest report to the OCLC membership, At a Tipping Point: Education, Learning and Libraries, OCLC explores the information consumer’s behaviors, beliefs and expectations for online learning. Fueled by mobile devices, new learning platforms and economic incentives, learners are trying… Continue Reading

U.S. Says It Spied on 89,000 Targets Last Year, But the Number Is Deceptive – Wired

Follow up to previous posting – ODNI and DOJ – Declassification of Renewal of Collection Under Section 501 of FISA – this commentary from Wired: “About 89,000 foreigners or organizations were targeted for spying under a U.S. surveillance order last year, according to a new transparency report. The report was released for the first time Friday by… Continue Reading

Which City Is the Next Big Fintech Hub? New York Stakes Its Claim – American Banker

Penny Crosman: “A friendly rivalry seems to be bubbling up between New York and London over which is the world’s next big financial technology hub. Accenture and the Partnership Fund for New York City, an investment fund that supports New York-based entrepreneurs, released a study Thursday detailing how the city is emerging as a hotbed of… Continue Reading

Facebook tinkered with users’ feeds for a massive psychology experiment – Study

William Hughes: “Scientists at Facebook have published a paper showing that they manipulated the content seen by more than 600,000 users in an attempt to determine whether this would affect their emotional state. The paper, “Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks,” was published in The Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences. It shows how Facebook data scientists… Continue Reading