The Yangtze River, a Challenging Rafting Adventure


Yangtze River pic
Yangtze River

Economist Philip H. Brown focuses on studying methods for people to rise above poverty. Away from his responsibilities as an economist, Philip H. Brown enjoys white-water rafting and has rafted down the Yangtze River.

Rafting the Yangtze River in China offers white-water rafters a difficult challenge. One section, known as the Great Bend of Yangtze, pushes six times the force of water that flows through the Grand Canyon through an area only a third as wide. Other challenging features of the Great Bend include huge waterfalls and rapids, such as a stretch of eight rapids called the Surprise.

For those brave enough to navigate the river, the Yangtze also offers spectacular views of mountains, fields, and stone villages. No more than 150 people have rafted this river, which makes it a boast-worthy challenge. The season for rafting the Yangtze only lasts approximately five months out of the year: from February through March and from August through October.


HelpAge Zimbabwe Supports the Elderly

HelpAge Zimbabwe pic
HelpAge Zimbabwe

Economist Philip H. Brown has conducted extensive research on the economies of Africa, China, and Chile, as well as areas closer to home, in an effort to address various social issues. Philip H. Brown previously served as a project associate for HelpAge Zimbabwe in an effort to support Zimbabwe’s older community.

HelpAge Zimbabwe is a branch of HelpAge International, whose African headquarters are located in Nairobi, Kenya. A charitable organization, HelpAge Zimbabwe supports seniors in that country, with the ultimate goal of increasing both the standard of living and the quality of health care for older adults, regardless of their religion, gender, color, or financial condition

HelpAge Zimbabwe also promotes the self-sufficiency of the older population in Zimbabwe via training and community-based initiatives focused on food security and income generation. The training also involves teaching such skills as finding sources of clean water and maintaining personal health, while the community-based initiatives also involve building or restoring housing and shelter.

Emissions Trading – A Brief Overview

Economist Philip H. Brown focuses the majority of his work in the areas of health, education, poverty, inequality, and the environment. As a developmental economist interested in the environment, Philip H. Brown examines the effects of various environmental policy instruments, including emissions trading.

Emissions trading, a market-based tool for managing greenhouse gas emissions, puts a price on air pollution and provides economic incentives for companies that work to reduce it. Under the most common type of emissions trading plan, a government agency or other organization sets a cap on allowable emissions and then allocates emissions permits that total the cap.

Participating companies that lack sufficient permits to cover their emissions must either work to reduce them or purchase additional permits from a company that has more credits than it needs. This type of system rewards efficiency and creates an incentive for companies to reduce their emissions, with the bonus of cutting operations costs and profiting from selling surplus permits to other participating entities.

Policy Approaches to Climate Change

Economist Philip H. Brown studies developing economies, identifying sources of poverty and ways to reduce it. A Ph.D. recipient from the University of Michigan, Philip H. Brown’s professional interests cover a broad range of topics, including global food prices, wind power, cost-benefit analysis, emissions trading plans, and dealing with climate change.

While advocates on both sides of the issue continue to argue passionately about the impact of human activity on climate change, policymakers must consider what steps to take, if any, with respect to the phenomenon. Significant areas of policy response to climate change include mitigation strategies, adaptation policies, and bioengineering.

Mitigation policies are designed to reduce or eliminate the discharge of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. In addition to regulating factory, automobile, and other emissions, mitigation activities include the development of renewable energy sources, increasing energy efficiency, and developing low-emission urban systems, among other approaches. Mitigation also includes changing consumer behavior as well as the way resources are managed.

Adaptation policy objectives are to help the population deal with consequences of climate change such as rising sea levels, extreme weather patterns, and ocean acidification. Example strategies include building flood defenses, employing environmentally responsible forestry practices, and developing crops that can tolerate the greater ranges of weather extremes.

A third approach under consideration is geoengineering, which involves direct intervention in the planetary energy balance. This is a relatively new strategy, and involves massive manipulation of the global environment. Examples of geoengineering include such techniques as dispersing particles into the atmosphere to “whiten” clouds and thus make them more reflective of the sun’s rays, increasing the iron content of seawater to encourage the development of plankton, seeding clouds to force rainfall, and genetically engineering crops to make them better reflect sunlight.

Helping the Poor – Development Economics

A graduate of the School for International Training, development economist Philip H. Brown dedicated his life to helping poor people while working in a camp for Rwandan refugees. Due in part to his time spent in a conflict-stricken area of Tanzania, Philip H. Brown decided to focus his research on poverty, instead of wealth, as a development economist.

First, there is no one school of thought for development economists to follow. Because each situation comes with its own set of conditions that contribute to economic progress or decline, every situation must be evaluated independently. The one constant is the idea that economics is about more than just money.

Second, development economists are concerned not with studying wealth but with studying and enacting real-world efforts to improve the lives of disadvantaged people. This means that instead of focusing solely on the economy of a country or area, larger factors such as societal structures that reinforce or disrupt the norm and political policies are considered.

What is Econometrics?

Specializing in developmental economics, Dr. Philip H. Brown is an economist based in Washington, D.C. who uses economic theory to address issues such as poverty, education, and the environment. As an economist focused on real-world problems, Philip H. Brown employs a variety of economic tools and methods in his research, including econometrics.

Econometrics is a qualitative research approach that involves the application of mathematics, statistics, and sometimes computer science to data in order to draw conclusions about economic relations and systems. Econometrics is especially helpful in testing and demonstrating theories and is often used to explore the causes and effects of economic relationships. This fact makes econometrics a useful tool for not only mathematicians and economists, but also news organizations, banks, and governments, who utilize econometrics to explain current economic conditions and explore the potential effects of various economic policies. Coming to prominence as an academic discipline in the 1930s, econometrics is now taught at universities and colleges around the world.

Philip H. Brown Discusses Microlending

Over the past several years microlending has grown in popularity as a tool used throughout the world, particularly in developing countries, for creating employment and building businesses. In 2006, Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their microlending efforts in communities throughout Bangladesh.

Microlending provides small loans to individuals who are economically disadvantaged and lack the collateral or credit necessary to secure traditional financing. Microlending operates under the theory that individuals in developing countries have vital skills they can use to operate their own businesses if they have startup capital to launch. For example, an individual may be able to purchase livestock for farming. If the farming operation is successful, the individual not only repays the loan but adds to the local economy through the growth of the operation. Microlending has been particularly popular in developing nations because of the small amounts of the loans involved, sometimes as little as $20. Additionally, microlending has been seen as a way to empower women in developing countries by financing their small business ventures.

Although microlending has increased in popularity, there is disagreement as to whether the practice noticeably improves conditions in developing areas. Thus, the impact remains a point of contention among economists.

Philip H. Brown is a development economist whose studies include health, education, gender, equality, and poverty. He has worked in China, Central America, Africa, and Chile, and his work has been discussed in Time, The New York Times, and on National Public Radio.