About Per SE

Commentary and research on current events and public policy by economists from the University of the Philippines
Author archive for Edita A Tan

How We Measure Poverty Understates its Extent and Depth: Some Results

The paper examined the methodology used for measuring the country’s poverty line and poverty rate. It finds that the poverty line was not based on the cost of meeting an acceptable or minimum standard of living or of meeting basic needs by which to classify families as poor as is customarily done in other...

Solving the slum problem

If a city's wealth is to be judged by its skyline, then Metro Manila, Cebu and other major cities must be rapidly getting rich. And yet, poverty has barely budged in recent years and the housing deprivations of millions of Filipinos fester and grow even worse.

Education, location, and poverty

Why has economic growth, which has outstripped population growth, not made much of a dent in our poverty? Why have our Southeast Asian neighbors succeeded in bringing poverty incidence down to single-digit levels or even to zero?

Who are poor and do they remain poor?

Poverty is most severe and persistent for households with low human capital and the effect of human capital varies substantially across locations. Additionally, low human capital households tend to underinvest in the human capital of school-age members, thus likely perpetuating poverty.

Reading the Chancellor’s Report on Enrollment and Graduation, SY 2012-2013

Chancellor Caesar Saloma’s report is given purely in numerical terms and graphs. The Chancellor presumably wants the figures to speak for themselves and reflect his own concerns relating to faculty quality and operational inefficiencies in the university.

Kristal Tejada, in memoriam

Oh UP! the realization of many years of dreaming. Then for a measly P6,000 tuition loan, she had to stop schooling. It was near-impossible for her parents to raise P6,000 to pay the loan on time. Where would a taxi driver find the funds for this large outlay?

Why the poor have many children

(with Katrina Dinglasan) The poor see see little opportunity for their children’s education and so have little interest in controlling family size. For them it does not matter how many children they may bear since the intensity of their poverty improves only marginally with fewer children. It is suggested that for a family planning...

The financial crisis, oil price hike, the Arab Spring and foreign demand for Filipino workers

The paper inquires into the impact of contemporary major world events – the recession in the United States and Western Europe, the oil price hike, and the Arab Spring – on the flow of overseas Filipino workers or OFWs and their remittances.

Population, poverty, politics and the Reproductive Health bill

The population issue has long been dead and buried in developed and most developing countries, including historically Catholic countries. That it continues to be debated heatedly in our country merely testifies to the lack of progress in policy and action. The Catholic Church hierarchy has maintained its traditional stance against modern family planning (FP) methods,...

Why are Boys Falling Behind Girls in Schooling?

(with Kristine S. Canales, Kevin G. Cruz, Jan Carlo B. Punongbayan) The paper tries to explain why women in the Philippines, as yet a low middle income country, obtain higher levels of education than boys. Four empirically based reasons are posited – the substantial expansion of the education system, the growth of job opportunities, the culture that...