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New CBMS Initiatives

New CBMS Initiative:Monitoring and Mitigating the Impact on Poverty of the Global Financial Economic Crisis

Project Components

Conduct of Policy Conference
In order to provide a venue to present the different issues relating to the impact of the global financial crisis, a policy conference was organized on February 17, 2009 in collaboration with the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) and the Australian Aid for International Development (AusAID)-Manila. This was participated in by policymakers, economists and other technical experts as well as the CBMS Teams in different countries covered by the project. Dr. Michael Spence (a recipient of 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics) and Dr. Randy Spence (Director of the Economic and Social Development Affiliates), shared their insights on the international dimension of the crisis and its potential impact on developing countries. Other prominent economists also shared their views on the possible impact of the crisis on the Philippines based on different perspectives. Resource persons also included Mr. Diwa Gunigundo (Deputy Governor, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) and Dr. Benjamin E. Diokno (Professor, UP School of Economics).

Conduct of Technical Workshops
A technical workshop was held in February 17-19, 2009 to provide a venue for discussing how the impact of financial crisis would be monitored using the CBMS methodology. The CBMS Project Team Leaders in the participating countries were invited to participate in this workshop to map out the framework of analysis and the monitoring strategy.

This workshop is also aimed at building the technical capacity of the CBMS Teams in using the CBMS approach in assessing the impact of economic shocks such as the current global financial crisis and in influencing government policies. For instance, there were discussions on how to incorporate indicators that would measure the impact of the financial crisis within the CBMS framework. The workshop also involved a thorough discussion of the transmission mechanisms by which the global financial crisis can affect individuals, households and communities. In this discussion, implications of the crisis for fiscal, exchange rate and capital market policies were considered along with the more micro social protection mechanisms - specifically with respect to how “vulnerable” the country is to financial and economic turbulence outside. Resource persons included some of the leading economists and statisticians: Dr. Randy Spence (Executive Director of the Economic and Social Development Affiliates), Dr. Ponciano Intal, Jr. (University Fellow at the De La Salle University, former Executive Director of the Angelo King Institute for Economics and Business Studies-DLSU and former Deputy Director General of the National Economic and Development Authority) and Mr. Tomas Africa (Regional Advisor for Asia, PARIS21 Secretariat, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development).

The technical workshop was able to produce the following outputs: 1) list of indicators that would need to be monitored to track the impacts; 2) list of questions that need to be added in the survey questionnaire to capture the required information; 3) the timing and frequency of data collection to be able to provide timely data to policymakers; and 4) identification of sites within the participating countries that can serve as sentinel sites or poverty observatories of this global monitoring system.

Conduct of Country-Specific Studies Using the CBMS Approach
The CBMS Teams involved in the project shall conduct a study on their respective countries using the impact indicators and the methodologies agreed upon during the technical workshop. As part of the expected outputs, each team shall prepare a research paper which aims to analyze the impact of the global financial crisis on their respective countries. The research papers shall also highlight recommendations that will help policymakers in designing measures that would mitigate the negative effects of the crisis. The research results of each country will also be consolidated in one full report in order to have an indication on the potential global impact of the crisis, as well as provide suggested actions for a coordinated response at regional or international levels.

The design and analysis of the surveys could as much as possible illuminate causes of negative impacts, which spread through international ‘transactions;” falls in exports, remittances, foreign direct and portfolio investment, possibly ODA and, increasingly, transactions in knowledge. At stake in all sectors are advances in incomes, jobs, work, education, health, security, equity and social functionality. More directly in terms of the CBMS surveys, information might be collected on effects such as remittance losses or credit tightening on household consumption and on business investment and employment. These may have effects that people perceive on their wellbeing, employment opportunities etc. Many negative impacts, however, will likely be difficult for people or researchers to ‘attribute’ to particular channels of crisis spread, and ultimately attributable to just general negative economic conditions and demand.

Dissemination Activities
The outputs of this project, including the research papers, will be disseminated through PEP-CBMS Network’s website and newsletter. In addition, the results will be presented to concerned policymakers and other stakeholders in another policy conference.