Monopoly and Micro-Irrigation in Smallholder Water Markets

Monopoly and Micro-Irrigation in Smallholder Water Markets. RAND Corporation. Benjamin P. Bryant. October 30, 2013.

Many rural agricultural areas around the world are facing severely depleted groundwater resources, which farmers rely on to increase agricultural productivity through irrigation. If groundwater in these areas is to be sustainably utilized, total withdrawals must be diminished from their current levels, which may cause a welfare loss on the part of farmers and their communities. The level of welfare loss, if any, and its distribution will depend which of a wide array of policies are implemented to curtail water use. In theory, the policies may take many forms, including direct and indirect rationing, direct and indirect marginal pricing, tradable water rights, and subsidizing water efficient technologies such as microirrigation. The research contributes to a policy debate motivated by the situation in North Gujarat, India, where a mix of recently enacted policies has somewhat helped to improve the groundwater situation, but in an inefficient manner. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 198 pages, 10.2 MB].

A Brief Look at the Early Implementation of Choice Neighborhoods

A Brief Look at the Early Implementation of Choice Neighborhoods. The Urban Institute. Rolf Pendall and Leah Hendey. October 25, 2013.

The Choice Neighborhoods Initiative, a signature program in the Obama Administration’s Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, aims to redevelop distressed assisted housing developments and improve their neighborhoods. The brief introduces the first five implementation sites, in Boston, Chicago, New Orleans, San Francisco, and Seattle, and the plans for rebuilding them. Ranging from a few blocks to over two square miles, the sites vary greatly in their challenges, programs, and key actors. All five are making progress in this new phase of federal housing and community development and are addressing the challenge of coordination in their ambitious attempts to build mixed-income neighborhoods. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 14 pages, 202.1 KB].

NATO Missile Defense and the European Phased Adaptive Approach: The Implications of Burden-Sharing and the Underappreciated Role of the U.S. Army

NATO Missile Defense and the European Phased Adaptive Approach: The Implications of Burden-Sharing and the Underappreciated Role of the U.S. Army. Strategic Studies Insitute. Steven J. Whitmore and John R. Deni. October 18, 2013.

NATO’s ballistic missile defense initiative remains a work in progress, but a lack of interceptor and sensor contributions on the part of the European allies is likely to have significant implications for the U.S. Army. In particular, the U.S. Army is likely to face increased manpower demands, materiel requirements, and training needs in order to meet the demand signal created by the NATO ballistic missile defense program.

[HTML format with a link to the PDF file, 71 pages].

The Role of News on Facebook

The Role of News on Facebook. Pew Research Journalism Project. Amy Mitchell et al. October 24, 2013.

On Facebook, the largest social media platform, news is a common but incidental experience, according to an initiative of Pew Research Center in collaboration with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Overall, about half of adult Facebook users, 47%, “ever” get news there. That amounts to 30% of the population. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 25 pages, 252.05 KB].

Exports No Longer Sole Path to Economic Rescue

Exports No Longer Sole Path to Economic Rescue. YaleGlobal. Will Hickey. October 24, 2013.

The global economy is in flux. Emerging economies await signals of an improving U.S. economy and for Federal Reserve plans to pull back from bond purchases on the order of $85 billion per month. Anticipating an end to those capital flows, investors began withdrawing capital from emerging markets, prompting currencies to fall in nations like India and Indonesia, explains Will Hickey. Reliance on exports no longer offers an easy answer for the emerging economies as the United States and many European countries with aging populations and high debt reduce spending. Hickey urges countries to address corruption, education systems mismatched with job needs, outdated infrastructure, bloated pubic sectors and bureaucracies, all of which can stifle innovation. Good economic policy builds upon education and the use of skills in adding value to products and services. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format, various paging].

Tablet and E-reader Ownership Update

Tablet and E-reader Ownership Update. Pew Internet & American Life Project. Lee Rainie & Aaron Smith. October 18, 2013.

The number of Americans ages 16 and older who own tablet computers has grown to 35%, and the share who have e-reading devices like Kindles and Nooks has grown to 24%. Overall, the number of people who have a tablet or an e-book reader among those 16 and older now stands at 43%. Up from 25% last year, more than half of those in households earning $75,000 or more now have tablets. Up from 19% last year, 38% of those in upper-income households now have e-readers. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 14 pages, 728.39 KB].

Conflict Management and Peacebuilding: Pillars of a New American Grand Strategy

Conflict Management and Peacebuilding: Pillars of a New American Grand Strategy. Strategic Studies Institute. Volker C. Franke and Robert H. Dorff, eds. October 16, 2013.

The authors examine the utility of the U.S. Government’s whole-of-government (WoG) approach for responding to the challenging security demands of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. They specifically discuss the strategic objectives of interagency cooperation particularly in the areas of peacebuilding and conflict management.

[HTML format with a link to the PDF file, 426 pages]. Executive Summary [PDF format, 2 pages, 624.56 KB].