Populism and Time Inconsistency

This recent VoxEU.org column analyzes the recent ascendance of populists across the international stage through the lens of the concept of ‘time inconsistency’—that is, the possible mismatch between what might be optimal today and what might be optimal over the longer term. Populist leaders, according to Mario Blejer and Piroska Nagy-Mohacsi, are time consistent in their constant objective of maximizing their own power. The authors propose some commitment devices to guard against populist abuses.  

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“In Just About Every Generation, Many People Thought the American Republic was on the Verge of Collapse”

The second installment of our two-part interview with Harvard Business School professor David Moss about his recent book Democracy: A Case Study. “One of the reasons that the most dire warnings have never come true, except in one case, is precisely because our predecessors worried about them so much.”  

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Raghuram Rajan: Populist Nationalism Is “the First Step Toward Crony Capitalism”

The former governor of the Reserve Bank of India discussed the “concentrated and devastating” impact that technology and trade had on blue-collar communities, the anger toward “totally discredited” elites following the 2008 financial crisis, and the subsequent rise of populist nationalism during a keynote address at the Stigler Center’s conference on the political economy of finance.   

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