About Per SE

Commentary and research on current events and public policy by economists from the University of the Philippines
Author archive for Ernesto M Pernia

Turnoff from ‘Fun in PH’ reprised

A year ago my family and I went off to Bohol and thoroughly enjoyed our holiday. But what started sweet ended sour owing to our return that went awry.

How economic policy evolved

A new book, Cesar Virata: Life and Times Through Four Decades of Philippine Economic History (UP Press, 2014) by Gerardo P. Sicat provides a broad sweep of post-war economic history. Yet it details important aspects of how economic policy evolved.

Evaluating and grading governance

To say that governance in our country leaves much to be desired is one great understatement. This is true for both the national government as it is for local government units. Evaluating and grading governance is a more involved process and a harder task than public opinion surveys. But it’s not insurmountable.

Investing in ‘suprastructure’ in the run-up to AEC

(with RL Clarete and GP Concepcion) Much has been said about our country’s huge infrastructure deficit, particularly in transport, power, and water. And criticisms or suggestions on this vital issue loudly persist which are just kosher till the public sees palpable improvements. By contrast, little is said about our deficient ‘suprastructure’.

Cesar Virata: Life and Times Through Four Decades of Philippine Economic History – A Brief Review

The book, authored by Gerardo P. Sicat and published by UP Press, provides a broad sweep of post-war economic history, yet it instructively details important aspects of how economic policy evolved. It offers a valuable macroeconomic perspective on our country while discoursing on the varied roles played by the subject in the economy.

The role of science, technology and research in economic development

[with Ammielou Gaduena and Adrian Mendoza] Technological innovation and economic growth are interactive and mutually reinforcing. To have a fighting chance in the Asean Economic Community competition, the Philippines needs to appreciably ramp up investment spending in science, engineering, and research and development.

Sour grapes, and sweet, on RH Law

The verdict by the Supreme Court on the Reproductive Health Law begot not one but two sweet surprises, seemingly gratifying both sides of the RH divide.

Can PH face up to AEC challenge?

A plethora of explanations has been advanced why the Philippines (PH) has fallen well behind the other four Asean originals. This ranges from the protectionist policies for so-called infant industries from external competition, political instability particularly in the 1980s that practically shooed away Japanese FDIs to the country’s neighbors, weak governance and dysfunctional institutions,...

Intergenerational poverty and joblessness

Perennially bugging the national leadership and society at-large has been persisting poverty even during periods of economic growth appreciably higher than its long-term norm. It is intimately linked to joblessness which the Social Weather Stations (SWS) latest survey reported last February 11 at 25.2 percent for 2013.

Turnoff from ‘fun in the Philippines’

The slew of holidays during the Christmas season is often an enticing opportunity for leisurely travel around the country. And so it was particularly during the dry and cool weeks just past.

Rising from Haiyan’s ruins

Recovering from the tragedy wrought by Typhoon Haiyan, the most potent typhoon ever to hit land in planet earth’s recorded history, is evidently no mean task. Difficult to estimate is the economic cost; virtually incalculable is the human cost, including lost human capital going to economic cost.

Science and heaven

I dropped by Barnes and Noble in San Francisco to check out what I could read on the long flight back home the next morning. What quickly caught my attention among the new releases was Proof of Heaven (2012), the #1 New York Times Bestseller.