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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues


Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues



Please join us for an exclusive virtual conversation with North Carolina Secretary of Commerce Machelle Baker Sanders. This discussion is part of the Dean’s Speaker Series, hosted by Kenan-Flagler Business School Dean Doug Shackelford.

As the U.S. continues to face COVID-19 and supply chain disruptions, experts debate just how worked up the economy is in its current state. This week’s insight serves as the first in a two-part point-counterpoint series, in which Kenan Institute Executive Director Greg Brown and Chief Economist Gerald Cohen hash out the arguments both for and against an overheating economy.

As the U.S. continues to face the effects of the pandemic and supply chain issues, Kenan Institute Executive Director Greg Brown and Chief Economist Gerald Cohen debate whether the overheated economy is ready to boil over – or if it’s simply simmering.

During a fireside chat on Jan. 5, Kenan Institute Chief Economist Gerald Cohen and Political Quotient Advisors CEO Mary Moore Hamrick discussed the political gamesmanship behind the $1.2 trillion U.S. infrastructure bill, drivers influencing national budget and debt ceiling debates, and the potential impact on U.S. and global economies.

COVID-19 brought heightened focus to paid sick leave policies – a benefit to which roughly 25% of civilian workers don’t have access in the U.S. After sick leave mandates were temporarily implemented during the pandemic, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School researchers found employment increased, particularly among low-skilled workers and in industries that previously had little access to paid sick leave. In this week's Kenan Insight, our experts explore possible drivers behind this finding as well as potential policy and business implications.

Kenan Institute Chief Economist Gerald Cohen reflects on the economic impact of the past year’s events in this holiday special for WRAL TechWire.

Federal, state and local governments worked hard to support businesses as they faced unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic — and many of these programs were successful in helping small businesses stay open. In a recent UNC School of Government Carolina Across 100 blog post, Kenan Institute Executive Director Greg Brown breaks down how the government at all levels stepped up to the challenge.

North Carolina’s small businesses provide economic mobility and crucial services in local communities that foster innovation and drive economic growth — a vital role that has been largely affected by COVID-19. In a recent UNC School of Government Carolina Across 100 blog post, Kenan Institute Executive Director Greg Brown sheds light on the impact – and a potential benefit – the pandemic has had on small businesses across the state.

While access and quality of healthcare in the U.S. are shaped by several factors—location, work, insurance—a simple change can make a big difference for patients. According to a new study led by the institute-affiliated Center for the Business of Health Faculty Director Brad Staats, delivering mental and physical care at the same location can improve patient experience and care efficiency. This week’s Kenan Insight offers a chance for our experts to explore the findings of this new study.

A $2 million grant from the Truist Foundation will fund the Anchor Institutions Create Economic Resilience program, or AICER, housed at CREATE, an economic development center at UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School’s Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise. The AICER program works with anchor institutions – such as universities, tribal and local governments, and hospitals – to source their goods and services from minority-owned firms, rural businesses and local suppliers in COVID-impacted communities.

As the pandemic forced shutdowns across the globe, U.S. government entities at the federal, state and local levels worked swiftly to secure known drivers of economic growth and job creation – including entrepreneurial ecosystems and small businesses. And while the programs implemented were widely lauded as successful, the story of who benefitted – and who did not – is more complex. This week’s Kenan Insight explores our experts’ key findings around the roles of policy and implementation in supporting equal access to opportunity.

Christian Lundblad, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Professor of Finance and Kenan Institute Director of Research, joined WRAL's Debra Morgan to discuss the state's uneven economic recovery due to employee fear of being exposed to coronavirus. Lundblad said business vaccine mandates will help alleviate those fears and draw more people back to work.