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B School for Public Policy Monthly 90-minute sessions on Capitol Hill »

Policy Issues


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  • DC Events

    William Stewart Woodside Professor Professor of Marketing Oct19  Improving Economic Prosperity through Nation Branding 1:00pm - 2:30pm
    Location: Russell Senate Office Building, Room 188
    It is well known that companies care deeply about their brands—and with good reason: a respected name attracts customers, solidifies their loyalty, and brings in higher returns. The idea of brand identity extends beyond the corporate world, though. Countries are also brands, and a country’s brand, like a corporate brand, is economically powerful. A positive country brand brings money and economic growth to it through tourism, foreign direct investment, and foreign trade; conversely, a negative country brand is economically costly. In this seminar, Professor David Reibstein from the Wharton School, who collaborates with U.S. News & World Report in developing the Best Countries Rankings, will examine nation branding as it applies to the U.S., and will discuss why a country should care about their brand globally and the role that public policy plays in shaping and communicating that brand to the world.
  • Faculty Affiliate

    Herbert Hovenkamp Herbert Hovenkamp

    A world-renowned scholar of antitrust law and policy, Professor Hovenkamp was called “the dean of American antitrust law” by The New York Times in 2011. Hovenkamp received the John Sherman Award from the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice in 2008, awarded a few times a decade for “outstanding achievement in antitrust law, contributing to the protection of American consumers and to the preservation of economic liberty.”

  • Antitrust in 2018: The Meaning of Consumer Welfare Now September 19 Antitrust in 2018: The Meaning of Consumer Welfare Now

    Modern antitrust policy follows the consumer welfare principle (CWP), the proposition that antitrust policy should encourage markets to produce high output consistent with sustainable competition, and low prices. The market dominance of giant firms such as Amazon, however, is opening the door to a reevaluation of this antitrust standard, particularly from a new antitrust “movement” that has economic goals, such as protecting small businesses and controlling runaway profits, that can be at odds with promoting low prices. Penn Law and Wharton Professor Herbert Hovencamp evaluates the merits of three antitrust frameworks within the context of the law and economic history. While he acknowledges that business can cause harm to the lives of Americans in ways that extend beyond inflating prices—i.e., creating barriers to market entry, stifling innovation, controlling information, or limiting wages—he argues that the CWP remains best positioned to respond to antitrust problems, although it would benefit from technical improvements.

  • Image: Fentanyl patch packages from several german generic drug manufacturers. Source: Wikimedia Commons September 19 The Economic and Public Health Impact of Fentanyl Contamination in the United States’ Counterfeit Drug Industry

    According to a July 2016 report by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), fentanyl contamination of counterfeit drugs has become a global threat.[1] While virtually all pharmaceutical medications and medical products can be found either diverted, adulterated or completely falsified on the black market, in recent years counterfeit opioids containing the extremely potent substance fentanyl have emerged as an incredibly dangerous threat affecting United States consumers.

  • Max Hammer

    For Max Hammer, not only is a summer working in the nation’s capitol a dream come true, but it’s one spent dealing with a different kind of capital, as well. “OPIC is the U.S. government’s development finance institution — it has roughly $24 billion under management,” Max tells us, “My group is in charge of roughly 20% of that, lending to emerging market private equity and venture capital firms who invest along ESG (environmental, social and governance) criteria.” When outside the office, Max learned firsthand the challenges of life after graduation, while also finding the time to do some sightseeing and summer reading.

  • Image: Narcan nasal spray demonstration in Pennsylvania. Source: Flickr September 17 Fighting Opioid Overdoses Can Be Cost-Effective

    The opioid crisis is one of the most recognizable domestic issues of contemporary America. Deaths attributed to drug overdoses have steadily risen over the last decade, and reached roughly 64,000 in 2016, a figure greater than the total number of Americans who died in the entirety of the Vietnam war.[1] [2] This makes drug overdoses the leading cause of death for Americans below age 50, and about two thirds of these deaths were due to opioids.[3][4]