a brief introduction to neoliberalism in the United states

"Neoliberalism is hard to define. It could refer to intensified  resource extraction, financialization, austerity, or something more ephemeral - a way of life - in which collective ideals of citizenship give way to marketized individualism and consumerism.”Greg Grandin The twentieth century was a complicated time period in the United States. It began with the second …

what is social exclusion?

Historically speaking, social exclusion was first linked with the concept of poverty as poverty was believed to be the cause of a group's inability to fully integrate and function within society. Poverty was initially measured in absolutes, meaning that there was a specific monetary threshold below which an individual or group was considered to be …

the principal-agent problem: what it is, why it’s important, and how it can be solved

The principal-agent problem is a common problem that arises whenever there is a contractual relationship between two parties - the principal, who in accordance with agreed upon terms, assigns a task to an agent, who then executes the task for the principal. It is expected that the agent will work on the behalf of the principal. Likewise, …

what value chains are and how they can optimize economic efficiency

First introduced in 1985 by Michael Porter, the value chain concept is understood as the process by which value is added to raw materials via various production processes in order to generate a final product that can be sold for a higher price. The main components of value chains are inbound logistics, operations, outbound logistic, marketing …

institutions: what they are, why we need them and how they shape our everyday lives

It is a common practice in the United States to sing Happy Birthday to a person when they survive another year on this planet. However, in China, birthday celebrations commonly take the form of elaborate banquets and are reserved for the very young or very old. Despite being obviously divergent practices, they are both considered …

business clusters: what they are and why they provide a competitive advantage

Have you ever wondered why Wall Street is known for finance or why the California wine industry has been so successful in integrating itself into the global market? In a word: clusters. Clusters are concentrations of complementary organizations, institutions and companies that are components of a given field in a specific geographic location. These conglomerations …

what cooperatives are and how they can benefit workers

The world we live in is quite complicated.  Being alone in this crazy, mixed-up reality can make this truth quite scary.  However,  even in the big, bad take-no-prisoners universe of globalized economics, there are tools that can be used to help improve one's chances of successful navigation through these choppy waters. One of the most …