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Fields of Specialization
Urban economics, Infrastructure economics, Climate change
Externally Hosted Work
Last updated April 12, 2023
Marianne Fay, an economist specializing in sustainable development, is the World Bank director for Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. She has 25 years’ experience in different regions of the world, contributing to knowledge on and the search for development solutions in the areas of infrastructure, urbanization, climate change, green growth and poverty reduction. She has published and edited several books and articles, including the “World Development Report 2010: Development and Climate Change,” and the report “Infrastructure in Latin America and the Caribbean: Recent Developments and Key Challenges.” Marianne is a U.S.-French binational.
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 8 of 8
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2007-11) Estache, Antonio ; Fay, MarianneThis paper provides an overview of the major current debates on infrastructure policy. It reviews the evidence on the macroeconomic significance of the sector in terms of growth and poverty alleviation. It also discusses the major institutional debates, including the relative comparative advantage of the public and the private sector in the various stages of infrastructure service delivery as well as the main options for changes in the role of government (i.e. regulation and decentralization).
Publication(Washington, DC, 2005-08) Morrison, Mary ; Fay, MarianneIn the last decade, most countries in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) have not spent enough on infrastructure. Total investment has fallen as a percentage of GDP, as public infrastructure expenditure has borne the brunt of fiscal adjustment, and private investment has failed to take up the slack. Most infrastructure services have therefore lagged behind East Asian comparators, middle income countries in general and China, in terms of both coverage and quality, despite the generally positive impacts of private sector involvement. This lackluster performance has slowed the LAC region's economic growth and progress in poverty reduction. Countries of the region therefore need to focus on upgrading their infrastructure, as this can yield great dividends in terms of growth, competitiveness and poverty reduction, as well as improving the quality of life of their citizens. Catching up requires significant new investment. But first, measures need to be taken to ensure that infrastructure spending produces higher returns, both economic and social. Both these tasks involve multiple challenges. The first section of the main report reviews progress made in infrastructure coverage and quality and discusses the impacts this has had on growth, competitiveness and the fight against poverty. The second section argues that the main issue has been that there has not been enough improvement in the management of resources, which have been insufficient anyway, and also reviews the region's experiences with private participation in infrastructure. The third section builds on the lessons of the last decade to tackle the key challenges: improving social and economic returns from infrastructure, managing private participation in infrastructure better and raising new finance for infrastructure.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-10) Fay, Marianne ; Ghesquiere, Francis ; Solo, TovaNatural disasters made two and a half million people homeless in Latin America between 1990 and 1999. The region has been plagued with an average of 30 disasters causing 7,500 fatalities a year for 30 years. Worse, the frequency of natural disasters appears to be rising. It is generally agreed that rapid population growth leading to larger and denser human settlements, combined with environment degradation are key reasons. The emergence of megacities, population concentration in coastal areas (which are particularly vulnerable), and persistent widespread poverty compound the problem.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2000-08) Fay, Marianne ; Opal, CharlotteTo find out why African countries' experience with urbanization and sustained growth appeared to differ from that of other countries, the authors investigated the determinants of urbanization across countries over 40 years. Rather than studying individuals' decisions to migrate, they relied on macroeconomic data and cross-country comparisons. A central hypothesis of their study: that individuals move (with varying degrees of ease) in response to economic incentives and opportunities. If location incentives are distorted, so is growth. The authors find that urbanization levels are closely correlated with levels of income. But urbanization continues even during periods of negative growth, carried by its own momentum, largely a function of the level of urbanization. From that viewpoint, Africa's urbanization without growth is not a puzzle. Factors other than income that help predict differences in levels of urbanization across countries include: a) income structure; b) education; c) rural-urban wage differentials; d) ethnic tensions; and e) civil disturbances. In addition, the relationship between economic incentives and urbanization is weaker in countries with fewer civil or political liberties. Factors other than initial urbanization level that help explain the speed of urbanization include: 1) The sector from which income growth is derived; 2) ethnic tensions; 3) civil disturbances and democracy (these two slow the pace of urbanization if all else is constant); 4) rural-urban wage differentials, whether they represent an urban bias or simply lower productivity in agriculture relative to other sectors. The weak relationship that this study shows between urbanization and traditionally accepted migration factors suggests that in Africa economists are overlooking part of the urbanization story. The fact that the informal sector appears to provide a significant source of income for urban migrants, coupled with the overlap between rural and urban activities, may shed light on the nature of urbanization in Africa.
Publication(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2015-06) Fay, Marianne ; Hallegatte, Stephane ; Vogt-Schilb, Adrien ; Rozenberg, Julie ; Narloch, Ulf ; Kerr, TomThe science is unequivocal: stabilizing climate change implies bringing net carbon emissions to zero. And this must be done by 2100 if we are to keep climate change anywhere near the 2 C. degree warming that world leaders have set as the maximum acceptable limit. Decarbonizing Development looks at what it would take to decarbonize the world economy by 2100 in a way that is compatible with countries’ broader development goals. It argues that the following are needed: Act early with an eye on the end-goal; Go beyond prices with a policy package that triggers changes in investment patterns, technologies and behaviors; Mind the political economy and smooth the transition for those who stand to be most affected.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2002-10) Deichmann, Uwe ; Fay, Marianne ; Koo, Jun ; Lall, Somik V.There are large and sustained differences in the economic performance of sub-national regions in most countries. The authors examine the economic structure and productivity in Southern Mexico and compare it with the rest of the country. The authors use firm level data from Mexican manufacturing to test the relative importance of firm level characteristics (such as human capital and technology adoption) compared with external characteristics (such as infrastructure quality and regulatory environment) in explaining productivity differentials. The authors find that the economic structure of Southern Mexico is considerably different from the rest of the country, with the economic landscape dominated by micro enterprises and a relative specialization in low productivity activities. This, coupled with low skill levels and fewer skill upgrading opportunities, reduces the performance of Southern firms. Productivity differentials between Southern firms and others, however, only exist for micro enterprises. The econometric analysis shows that while employee training and technology adoption enhance productivity, access to markets by improving transport infrastructure that link urban areas also have important productivity effects.
Publication(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007) Fay, Marianne ; Morrison, MaryThis book reviews Latin America's experience with infrastructure reform over the last fifteen years. It argues that the region's infrastructure has suffered from public retrenchment and unrealistic expectations about private involvement. Poor infrastructure now hampers productivity, growth, and poverty reduction. Addressing this requires more and better spending, and acceptance that governments remain central to infrastructure provision and supervision, although the private sector still has an important role to play.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009) Estache, Antonio ; Fay, MarianneThis paper provides an overview of the major current debates on infrastructure policy. It reviews the evidence on the macroeconomic significance of the sector in terms of growth and poverty alleviation. It also discusses the major institutional debates, including the relative comparative advantage of the public and the private sector in the various stages of infrastructure service delivery as well as the main options for changes in the role of government (i.e. regulation and decentralization).