EconTalk: Townsend on Development, Poverty, and Financial Institutions

Russ Roberts in Conversation with Rob Townsend - Podcast
March 14, 2011


CFSP Faculty Director and Principal Investigator, Robert M. Townsend, sat down with Ross Roberts, host of EconTalk, to discuss global development, particularly the role of formal and informal financial institutions.

Townsend offered thoughts on a wide range of topics concerning both Thailand and the United States.  Townsend stressed the importance of extensive panel data, such as that developed through his research in Thailand.  He feels the presence of such data would only improve policy decisions, saying: "I really think many countries would be much better off if they not only had these kinds of data but also had the frameworks so they could interpret them and base policy on the conclusions of the analysis . . . My heartfelt agenda is to have enough data and enough frameworks to be able to assess the flow of funds and rates of return and call a spade a spade, institution by institution." <Read the transcript and download the podcast.>