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Primeron Reforms in a Second-Best Ambiguous Environment; A Case for Gradualism

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  • S. Nuri Erbas
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    Ambiguity, as opposed to uncertainty, reflects lack of sufficient information about distribution and payoffs of infrequent events. Reforms are infrequent events, undertaken in ambiguous second-best environments where bad reform outcomes are feasible. A general case for the gradualist reform strategy is that it may pay to defer some reforms until relevant information about possible reform outcomes and associated probabilities is revealed, and ambiguity is reduced over time. Gradualism may dominate the big bang strategy, if some of the reforms in a reform sequence are not sure bets and waiting costs do not dominate reversal costs under some information sets forthcoming over time. The relation to Ellsberg's Paradox is discussed. Some cases for and against gradualism are reviewed.

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    Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 02/50.

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    Length: 56
    Date of creation: 01 Mar 2002
    Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:02/50
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