TARGET GROUP | Junior to mid-level officials from central banks and government agencies from 31 countries in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia who are involved in the collection, compilation, and analysis of competitiveness indicators. Participants should have a degree in economics, statistics or equivalent experience. Proficiency in the use of spreadsheets and knowledge of statistical programs are welcome.
As the name of the course suggests, the core focus is on three inter-related concepts, namely: competitiveness, growth and crises. These themes serve as the guiding ‘red thread’ of the course, and are explored from various angles. The conceptual framework proposed in the course is that competitiveness is a relative concept, covering a set of underlying conditions that explains the level of development. Hence, it is the starting point and at the same time the objective that countries, industries and firms aspire to, leading to higher productivity, and hence growth. Crises come into play as external shocks that disrupt the competitiveness-productivity-development nexus, but also as a force that can bring about new opportunities.
Upon completion of the course, the aim is for the participants to gain a deeper understanding of the discussions surrounding the competitiveness of an economy, and formulate their own views regarding suitable policy responses. The course will also enable participants to critically discuss and interpret various indicators related to competitiveness with respect to long-term growth potentials, patterns of specialization and short-term imbalances, as well as aspects related to the current economic crisis. Participants gain further insights in the construction of indicators and the underlying statistical material and computational requirements needed for quantifying them according to EU and international standards.
Hands-on exercises with real data and an overview of existing databases allow for an active involvement in the course. Participants are invited to provide short presentations on a relevant topic of their choice and actively engage with other students to foster peer-to-peer learning.