A leading economist who took Uber’s money and delivered favorable results sees his reputation tarnished

A year ago, I described how the controversial and well-financed ride-hauling platform Uber pays economists with data and money to do Uber-related research. This research invariably leads to favourable results, which can be used to fend off criticism and regulation. One such study has now been ripped apart in the Industrial & Labor Relations Review (ILR), a top journal in labor-economics.

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Demonetisation in India was a great success – for the Better Than Cash Alliance

Two years ago, on 8 November 2016 at 8 pm, prime minister Narendra Modi declared most cash in India demonetised, starting a period of several months of severe cash shortage, which imposed a lot of hardship and suffering on the people. The National Herald India invited me to write a guest-comment on the occasion.

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Germany’s highest administrative court will rule on the meaning of legal tender

The Bundesverwaltungsgericht in Leipzig, Germany’s highest administrative court, has set the date for hearing my complaint against the refusal of the German public broadcasters to accept the payment in cash of the “Rundfunkbeitrag”. That is the fee that all Germans have to pay by law to finance public braodcasting. At stake is the meaning of legal tender. Can public institutions refuse to accept the settlement of a money debt by means of the legal tender? Aktenzeichen: BVerwG 6 C 6.18

Brave New Money goes China and Korea

The German publisher of “Schönes neues Geld” (Brave New Money), Campus, has sold foreign rights to publishers in South Korea and in China. I am glad that the information on the global campaign to ablish cash and civic rights is spreading. 

Brave New Money: Engl. Translation of “Schönes neues Geld”. Part 2 and End.

The trend toward a digital world currency: The winner takes all is a basic rule of the digital economy. Whoever is ahead has a large advantage, just from being ahead, and has a good chance to end up as a quasi-monopolist. This has two main reasons, called network effects and economies of scale. Network effects make digital services more attractive, if more people use them. This is true for social media or trading platforms as well as for computer programs like Word or Windows. Economies of scale arise, because once a digital service or a programme has been developed, it often costs next to nothing to provide it to more customers. Thus, the leader, who has the most customers, can offer the most attractive digital services at the lowest cost. This is the reason why Google, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Facebook have risen to the top of the league of the most valuable American companies within only a few years. Together with their Chinese look-alikes Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent hold the global top-spots. They all have a near-monopoly in their industry and can command very high profit margins.

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Brave New Money: PayPal, WeChat, Amazon Go – A Totalitarian World Currency in the Making

My book in German* with the translated title: “Brave New Money: PayPal, WeChat, Amazon Go – A Totalitarian World Currency in the Making” has just been published by Campus. I have tanslated the “Introduction and Overview” and part of Chapter 1. I will publish this translation in two parts over the next few days. This is part 1.

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