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NEWS + ANALYSIS

MERGING FREE MARKET THINK TANKS: THE CASE OF LIBERTAD Y PROGRESO

June 13, 2019 | by Iván Cachanosky and Michel Kelly-Gagnon

In the world of for-profit corporations, organizations can grow organically but they can also do so through mergers and acquisitions. Conversely, non-profit organizations typically do not have access to this latter path in order to fuel their growth. But this does not mean that the fundamental justifications for or potential benefits of mergers or acquisitions processes that are found in the business world are absent from the not-for-profit world. For instance, a fragmented market could very well be better served following a round of consolidations. Synergies could be found and efficiency gains could be made. And, in the case of hostile takeovers, less competent management teams could be purged and replaced by better ones.

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HONOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP, NOT THE CORPORATE STATE THAT PRODUCES MISERY, HUNGER, AND SCARCITY

May 14, 2019 | by Antonella Marty

Throughout Latin America, it is clear that the support base for home-grown populism lies in the state sector—state-owned companies created and maintained by successive governments. As a general rule, they have proved to be deficient and unproductive, and their final product is invariably a string of failures and poor economic results. By the same token, these companies are run by state bureaucrats who essentially fear competition and strongly reject anything related to innovation and progress. The spirit of innovation and entrepreneurs is fundamental to the growth of any country, provided an atmosphere of absolute labor freedom is assured. Those men who make a career out of overcoming state regulation are generators of competition and the engines of growth. They improve the lives of ordinary people. They are the real heroes, and plenty of them can be found all over the world.

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CAN THINK TANKS CREATE THE INEVITABLE?

April 30, 2019 | by Dr. Lyall Swim

Milton Friedman once noted that the role of think tanks is to “primarily keep options open, to have available alternatives, so when the brute force of events makes a change inevitable, there is an alternative available to change it.” Friedman’s sentiment is often cited as a kind of value proposition for think tanks around the globe.

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HOW THE RETAILER TAX IN SLOVAKIA WAS ABOLISHED

April 25, 2019 | by Martin Vlachynsky

Several Eastern European countries have been flirting with various forms of a “retailer tax.” This tax is similar (but not equal) to the value added tax (VAT) and the sales tax. The proclaimed aim of the tax is to “punish” international retail chains, who have been repeatedly blamed for problems of local farmers and the local food and beverages industry. In reality, it primarily hits consumers.

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THE DIMINISHING ROLE OF THE WORLD BANK: HOW LOCAL THINK TANKS ARE LEADING THE POVERTY FIGHT

February 7, 2019 | by Matt Warner

News that the World Bank’s president, Jim Yong Kim, is calling it quits to join the private sector has heightened the debate over what to do about foreign aid inefficacy. Kim made clear in an email to staff that, in his view, the “massive development finance gap” in low-income countries is best addressed by private investment. Kim’s likely successor, David Malpass, shares this view and has gone on record describing the World Bank’s financing approach as outdated due to increases in private capital available to developing countries.

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CAN THINK TANKS SUCCEED WHERE FOREIGN AID HAS FAILED?

January 25, 2019 | by Matt Warner

In Ruhiira, Uganda, an international aid project once offered villagers $300,000 to grow maize instead of matoke, a banana-like starch. Maize, the aid experts reasoned, was better to farm because it is nutritious, drought-resistant, and produces high yields. The experts were right. At harvest time, the villagers found themselves with a bumper crop of 3,840 tons of maize.

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