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Three essays on informalization




Gálvez García, Jose Rolando, author
Braunstein, Elissa, advisor
Tavani, Daniele, advisor
Vasudevan, Ramaa, committee member
Zaharan, Sammy, committee member
Velasco, Marcela, committee member

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This dissertation uses informalization as a way to identify workers and enterprises that engage in low-productivity, or contingent economic activities, and are systemically excluded from the costs and benefits of social welfare. Informalization represents a serious challenge for inclusive development in many economies around the world, particularly those in Latin America. The first chapter uses a political economy perspective to argue for adopting institutional approaches to conceptualize and understand informalization in order to account for the structural, exclusionary, and discriminatory dimensions of this development challenge. Adopting a macroeconomic perspective, chapter two analyzes the association between real exchange rates and the extent of urban informal employment in multiple Latin American economies in recent decades. Results indicate that real exchange rate competitiveness is associated with lower levels of urban informal employment in the region. The third chapter, taking a microeconomic approach, explores differences between formal and informal enterprises in Guatemala, and how these differences impact output and labor productivity.


Includes bibliographical references.
2020 Summer.

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political economy


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