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the crash advocacy groups & resources

advoacy groups INTERNATIONAL FORUM ON GLOBALIZATION

IFG is an alliance of leading scholars, activists, economists and researchers from more than 40 organizations in 20 countries. Its mission is to "rethink...and develop alternative strategies...that might reverse the globalization trend and redirect actions toward revitalizing local economies."

IFG offers a section called "Global Financial Crisis" with reports written by IFG members that include: "The Economic Crisis in East Asia: Causes, Effects, Lessons;" "Background to the Global Financial Crisis;" "IMF's Role in Asian Crisis;" and "Multilateral Agreement on Investment (MAI)."

The IFG's "Siena Declaration" criticizes current rules of globalization for removing economic power from nations/communities and giving new powers to corporations and financial speculators. It calls for a "Bretton Woods-type international conference which would bring to the table not only representatives from nation-states...but organizations from every country to design economic models..." THIRD WORLD NETWORK (TWN)

This is an authoritative voice on globalization issues, especially from the perspective of developing countries. Headquartered in Malaysia and with offices worldwide, TWN focuses on development in the "South" or developing world. Their website contains a large compilation of readings on the global financial crisis, trade, environment, the IMF's actions, the UN, women's issues, as well as an "Action Alert" area where visitors can sign on to various petition letters.

Just one example of interesting reading on this site is "Brazil is a Time Bomb" which offers these stats on the impact of the financial crisis:

"Spending cuts envisioned in the Brazilian government's deal with the IMF include a possible 90% reduction in Amazon conservation programs...Austerity measures will also force people facing unemployment in the cities to illegally clear and log small-scale mining for survival...Brazil is not alone in facing such dire consequences. Russia is considering cutting Siberian old-growth forests--previously considered too remote to be commercially viable--to raise desperately-needed cash, according to Friends of the Earth.... Brazil, Russia and Indonesia, all in economic turmoil, are home to 47% of the world's remaining ancient forests, according to the Washington-based World Resources Institute." JUBILEE 2000

The world's poorest countries owe as much as $300 billion and momentum has been building to cancel their debts in a way that advocates say must be open, fair and responsible. Jubilee 2000 is in the vanguard of this campaign. It is a worldwide movement with campaigns in over 50 countries, including the U.S., Canada and Britain. For the second year in a row, Jubilee 2000 staged a massive demonstration at the G7 conference of wealthy nations. A human chain of 35,000 people stretching 3.5 miles long surrounded the G7 conference center in Cologne, Germany and presented 17 million petition signatures calling for debt relief for impoverished nations. This Jubilee 2000 site for the U.S. is comprehensive and up to date, offering information on the issues surrounding debt relief, past and upcoming activities, how to become involved, and links to the sites of others in the Jubilee 2000 movement. ECONOMIC POLICY INSTITUTE

EPI is a research and education organization that seeks to broaden economic policy discussions to include the interests of low and middle income workers. EPI was founded by economic policy experts including, Lester Thurow, Barry Bluestone, Robert Kuttner, Jeff Faux and Robert Reich.

Under "Trade & Globalization," there's a range of articles on trade and globalization issues including opinion pieces written by EPI associates. For example, op-ed pieces such as "The Time Has Come for Real IMF Reform" and a recent paper, "Protecting Worker Rights Around the World."

Another paper, "Rebuilding the Caribbean--A Better Foundation for Sustainable Growth" deals with the Hurricane Mitch recovery and argues that relief plans being considered by the U.S., especially those that focus on liberalized trade, will only set the region up for future failure. (Note: one needs Adobe Acrobat to read this.) PUBLIC CITIZEN GLOBAL TRADE WATCH

Global Trade Watch is an extension of Public Citizen, the public advocacy organization founded by Ralph Nader. GTW advocates an international and trading system that benefits not only transnational corporations, but also the people that work for them and consumers.

GTW was active in the grassroots campaign which defeated President Clinton's "fast-track" 1997 trade authority bill--which would have pressured Congress to quickly consider completed trade agreements with no amendments and limited debate.

Public Citizen publishes a monthly report called "Harmonization Alert!" which advocates that "social, safety, economic and environmental standards should be the same everywhere [across the globe]." ECONOMIC INSTITUTES FINANCIAL MARKETS CENTER

This independent, non-profit group provides research and education resources to grassroots groups, unions, policymakers and journalists interested in the Federal Reserve System and financial markets.

Under its TOPICS section, go to "Financial Markets" for several articles examining the need for revamping financial regulations and the architecture of global finance. Two articles: "Goodbye Washington Consensus, Hello Main Street" and, "There is an Alternative."

FMC's newsletter"FOMC Alerts" (found in the PUBLICATIONS section) has articles on the global contagion. (To view, one needs Adobe Acrobat reader.) Articles here include: "Turning the Corner" by William Greider (May 1999); "Reforming the Privatized International Monetary System" (December 1998); "Financial Problems of a Large Hedge Fund" (December 1998, subject: Long Term Capital Management hedge fund); "The Butterfly Effect" (June 30-July 1, 1998) (subject: global currency instability); "This is an Efficient Market?" (March 1999); "Private Sector Debt Grows, US Exposure to External Market Conditions Increases" (March 1999) CENTER FOR ECONOMIC POLICY ANALYSIS (CEPA)

CEPA, part of New York's New School for Social Research, is headed by economist Lance Taylor and focuses on economic policy analysis. Its three areas of emphasis are macroeconomic policy, inequality and poverty, and globalization. Two currently-funded research projects underway include "Globalization and Social Policy" and "International Capital Markets and the Future of Economic Policy." Working papers (both abstracts and full text through Adobe Reader) are available on CEPA's Website.

Titles include: "NAFTA, the Peso Crisis, and the Contradictions of the Mexican Economic Growth Strategy;" "The Revival of the Liberal Creed: The IMF, the World Bank and Inequality in a Globalized Economy;" "Capital Market Liberalization and Economic Performance in Latin America;" "Financial Regulation in a Liberalized Global Environment;" "The Asian Crisis: Competing Explanations;" and "International Capital Markets and the Future of Economic Policy" THE JEROME LEVY ECONOMICS INSTITUTE

Part of Bard College in upstate New York, this institute's economic forecasting tries to "generate effective public policy responses to important economic problems that profoundly affect the quality of life in the US and abroad."

Two of the Levy Institute's four research programs include "Financial Markets and Monetary Policy" and "International Trade and Competitiveness."

The Levy Institute offers an online quarterly newsletter, "Report, " which has a monthly interview with a scholar or public official on a current topic of debate (e.g. the issue of hedge funds in its February 1999 report), synopses of conferences and seminars, reports on the Levy Institute's news and scholars' activities, and summaris on new publications. It is geared toward a diverse, general audience. The Levy Institute also offers Public Policy Brief Highlights which are condensed, online statements of basic arguments and policy recommendations of the institute's economic briefs. There are also working papers such as: "Risk Reduction in the New Financial Architecture: Realities, Fallacies and Proposals" and "Real Exchange Rates and the International Mobility of Capital." INSTITUTE FOR INTERNATIONAL ECONOMICS

This Washington D.C.-based, non-profit organization devotes itself to the study of international economic policy. Some of the topics or papers it offers include Fred Bergsten (director of IIE) on Exchange Systems Reform; and papers on The Global Trading System & Global Aftershocks. Its Policy Briefs cover topics such as: "Market Mechanism to Reduce the Need for IMF Bailouts Crawling Bands or Monitoring Bands: How to Manage Exchange Rates in a World of Capital Mobility;" "Reviving the "Asian Monetary Fund;" "A New Strategy for the Global Crisis;" "The Asian Financial Crisis."

There are also "Speeches, Testimony and Essays" and useful web links to other sites about the Asian financial crisis (e.g. International Trade Administration, Columbia East Asian Review). IIE also has country-by-country web links guide to East Asia--under Indonesia, for example, there are links for the Jakarta Stock Exchange; under South Korea there are links to the Bank of Korea and the Korea Economic Weekly; Thailand: Business Day (from Thailand).

CENTRAL BANKING RESOURCE CENTER

An interesting web site with a collection of links to many nations' central banks and finance ministries. For example, visitors can go to the web site of Brazil's finance ministry where they'll find the latest headlines, such as: "Brazil Gets US $1 billion from World Bank" or "IMF Announces Conclusion of Staff Negotiations with Brazil." Other categories on the site include: Currency Boards, Financial and Economic Conferences, Monetary Research Institutes, Central Bank Research Departments, Financial News and Central Banking History OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL

This policy research institution focuses on the interrelationship of globalization, which it favors, but acknowledges that the system needs improvement. ODC describes its mission as seeking "to improve decision-making on multilateral cooperation to promote more effective development and the better management of related global problems."

The site offers papers and excerpts on: "The US Perspective on Globalization;" "Environment and Trade: A Framework for Moving Forward;" "The New Global Economy and Developing Countries: Making Openness Work;" "Managing the International Economy in an Age of Globalization; " "US Trade Policy: Misreading the Developing World."

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