Michaels, Guy (2010) Challenges for research on resource-rich economies. Kuwait Programme on Development, Governance and Globalisation in the Gulf States, 8. London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.
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The scope for economic research on resource-rich countries has widened considerably over the past two decades. While examination of market-based channels mechanisms (such as spending effects and exchange-rate appreciation) and resource price volatility are still important, other issues are coming to the forefront. These include the risk of depletion or technological changes that may reduce demand for natural resources or production factors, issues related to migration and inequality, and concerns regarding the use or misuse of revenues from natural resources and power struggles over them. Concerns about the effects of resource-abundance also extend beyond national borders, covering such diverse topics as conflicts over the control of resources and their possible contribution to climate change. I argue that progress in understanding these issues is constrained by the shortcomings of cross-country analysis as a way to model counterfactual scenarios and by the paucity of good data. The paper outlines specific gaps in the literature, pointing the way for future research on resource-rich economies in general and on the Gulf states in particular.
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