Professor Max Gillman invited to speak at Turkish summit on “Economic Transformation and New Paradigms”
Max Gillman, the Friedrich A. Hayek Professor in Economic History at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, joined a select group of economists from around the world at Turkey’s first Economic Transformation Summit, held Sept. 29 in the capital city of Istanbul.
The Turkish Treasury and Finance Ministry organized the one-day summit, “Economic Transformation and New Paradigms,” which explored major shifts that have taken place in the global economy in recent years, including but not limited to those caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Gillman joined a panel of economists from South Korea, the Netherlands and Italy discussing the “Importance of Investment-Production-Export model for Developing Countries.”
Turkey has this new economic model, which is part of non-orthodox policies called heterodox economics. The panel put into perspective the Turkish economic model, which is emphasizing investment in infrastructure. Gillman was emphasizing also investment in the education sector. Human capital investment is essential for the developing economies to become developed economies. He stressed the structural transformation of moving from agriculture towards manufacturing towards high-tech industry.
Last year, Gillman published a paper in the journal Economic Modelling titled “Steps in Industrial Development through Human Capital Deepening” that served as the foundation for the talk. The paper presents a model for industrial development in which human capital is deepened, education time increases and labor shifts away from agriculture. As that occurs, labor shifts toward new industry and away from traditional industry.
“The model explains rising education levels, growth and labor reallocation using a minimally complex approach that jointly explains stylized facts through human capital deepening within each industry,” according to its abstract.
Other panels explored “New trends in economic policies in the post-pandemic period,” the “Growing importance of infrastructure investments in the new period” and the “Growing importance of a financial architecture that supports growth in the new period” with economists from Australia, Germany, Japan, the Philippines, Portugal, Sweden, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The next morning, the speakers were invited to a breakfast with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan at the Presidential Palace.
Gillman along with his fellow economists had an opportunity to offer advice to the Turkish leader. A wide range of nuanced views was presented by the professors that supported the path that Turkey was taking.
Gillman, who researches inflation, stressed the importance of Turkey to the Western economy and the Western alliance, while agreeing that controlling inflation is an important objective. Gillman acknowledged the tightrope that Turkey was balancing along as one of the most important countries in the world that intermediates the aspirations of the East with those of the West, while remaining a key part of the Western firmament.
Gillman also expressed confidence in the economic policy path that Turkey was taking as shepherded by the Minister of Treasury and Finance, in terms of its investment strategy as long as inflation could be brought under control.