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Reports

September, 2017
Thematic Area: 

A high percep on of corrup on in Jamaica exists, both locally and interna onally. The country consistently performs poorly on global corrup on indices, with other governance indicators ci ng corrup on as a major problem for the country. Polls done domes cally reveal similar views on corrup on in the country with many locals regarding key ins tu ons in the country as being highly corrupt. This report reviewed innova ons used to strengthen integrity in countries around the world, with a view to recommending one such innova on to strengthen Jamaica’s own integrity. Having assessed the corrup on situa on in Jamaica and examined what the exis ng an -corrup on framework allows, it was found that any innova on implemented in the country must address certain contextual criteria. As corrup on was seen to be pervasive across all levels of society, any innova on would have to engage all members of society to e ect real change. Addi onally, during consulta on with several an -corrup on ins tu ons on the island, it was found that a major downfall of the innova ons they currently use is a lack of data collec on which is necessary to assess their e ec veness. Consequently, ini a ves used in Jamaica should allow for clear target-se ng and quan ca on of results. Furthermore, given the resource constraints, and in general, the economic challenges facing the country, innova ons should be cost-e ec ve and sustainable. Notably, Jamaicans have a strong inclina on to technology and innova on and thus, the ini a ve should also be technologically inspired as this may spur on the uptake by the public. 

 

July, 2017
Thematic Area: 

Ascertaining the true cost of providing an undergraduate degree in Jamaica is critical for students, ter ary ins tu ons, and government policy-makers. For prospective and current university students, understanding the real cost of a degree may force them to make more cost-effective choices, thus, reducing the cost barrier to educa on and increasing the likelihood of nishing their degree programme. For policy-makers, this informa on is important in order to make decisions that ultimately enhance access to and choice of a aining a ter ary education. Lastly, ter ary ins tu ons, and by extension the government, would be interested in decreasing this barrier (the real cost) to tertiary education which in turn would increase access, enrolment, and contribute more significantly to economic development. 

 

 

May, 2017
Thematic Area: 

Jamaica is unique for many reasons. Perhaps the most striking among these is that for almost every resident in the
country, there is an individual living in the diaspora abroad. This near one-to-one ratio of nationals to diaspora members
presents a tremendous opportunity for cross-border engagement, among people who share common cultures and
histories.
 
Diasporas can, and in many cases do play an important role in the economic development of their countries of origin or
ancestry. Beyond sending remittances, they can also promote trade and foreign direct investment, create businesses,
spur entrepreneurship and transfer new knowledge and skills. The Jamaican Diaspora, therefore, is believed to represent
a very powerful reservoir of capital, relationships, skills and expertise that remains largely untapped, and, if realised,
can assist in the growth and development of Jamaica. However, beyond remittances, there is little empirical evidence
to support this.

October, 2016
Thematic Area: 

The re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba, and their agenda for normalising relations hold more opportunities than threats for Jamaica. The changes in the U.S.-Cuba relationship strengthen the already positive climate for economic growth and investment in the relatively large and diverse Cuban market, and will support that country’s progressive investment policy reforms and growth in private enterprise. The prospect of further growth in the Cuban economy is an opportunity for revival of the Jamaican economy. 

 

September, 2016
Thematic Area: 
The purpose of this study is to identify ways to improve tax compliance in Jamaica. In order to do so, a survey of literature in
tax compliance was conducted to ascertain the techniques that have and have not been working in other countries. Recent
reforms implemented by the tax authority in Jamaica, Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ), were then identified and compared with
international best practice.
September, 2016
Thematic Area: 

Can the Tivoli Commission of Enquiry deliver policy recommenda ons which are bene cial to Jamaican democracy? Will the government implement these recommenda ons? What kind of policy outcomes should result from the establishment of the Commission? Will the Commission u lize a problem-solving approach by making recommenda ons which respond to both the immediate problem as well as the problema cs of the garrison phenomenon, a major root cause of the May 2010 events? These are important ques ons being asked by various commentators, who have engaged in the public debates about the role of the Tivoli Commission of Enquiry and the current state of Jamaica’s socio-poli cal milieu. The purpose of this brief is to examine some of these salient policy issues. 

 

September, 2016
Thematic Area: 

This report is part of a project undertaken in collaboration with the Embassy of the U.S. in Jamaica, titled "Dialogues Between Democracies". This project, which consisted of a series of events and the present research, examined the benefits and challenges of the bilateral relations between the United States and Jamaica. Focusing on the themes of Security, Health & Prosperity, Democratic Governance and Social Inclusion, "Dialogues Between Democracies" celebrated the achivements of a strong partnership, whilst providing evidence-based recommendations to strengthen this partnership, presented in this report. 

July, 2016
Thematic Area: 

The National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) is tasked with safeguarding public health through environmentally sound solid waste management practices but has largely failed to achieve this objective. Many have proposed privatisation as a method of overcoming the obstacles which have hindered the NSWMA. What are these obstacles? Should the NSWMA be privatised? If it should, what models of privatisation should be pursued? And what lessons could be learnt from other countries’ experiences with privatising solid waste management services? This report aims to answer these questions.

 

June, 2016
Thematic Area: 

There is an increasingly global consensus regarding the comparative merits of, and shift towards the adoption of electronic Government-to-Person (G2P) payments to replace cash. The emergence of the mobile phone as a low-cost, pervasive payments channel has fuelled this momentum. This study examines and presents considerations for the adoption of mobile G2P payments for the delivery of PATH benefits in Jamaica. Through the analysis of several country case studies and an examination of Jamaica’s current economic landscape and policy imperatives, the study makes the case for the use of a PPP-model of engagement for implementing a mobile PATH payments system that could become the cornerstone of a robust national mobile payments ecosystem.

May, 2016
Thematic Area: 
Most Jamaicans dream of owning a ‘big house on the hill’. While many would settle for a basic two-bedroom, concrete structure with just the basic amenities, houses are nonetheless expensive assets that require a substantial portion of buyers’ lifetime incomes. The National Housing Trust (NHT) was established in the belief that homeownership could be facilitated by a public mortgage body that built homes and subsidised the loans to purchase them. However, the current accumulated capital of J$126 billion, along with an additional J$76 billion in employee contributions held in the Trust, raises the following questions: (i) How much money does the NHT need to carry out its mandate in the way it has been doing? (ii) Is the NHT meeting its mandate? (iii) Is it using the right approach to deliver on its mandate?

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