Twentieth Jacques Polak Annual Research Conference: “Debt: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”

November 7-8, 2019

The International Monetary Fund will hold the Twentieth Jacques Polak Annual Research Conference at its headquarters in Washington DC on November 7-8, 2019.

Global debt has reached a new record, standing now at over 300 percent of world output. Not all debt is the same, nor is it evenly distributed across countries, regions or sectors. Debt can facilitate the expansion of productive investment, including the funds to repair and expand infrastructure necessary for continued economic growth. At the same time, debt overhang and increased debt service can leave economies vulnerable to rollover risk, sudden tightening of credit and even default. Given the prominence of higher debt across advanced, emerging, frontier markets as well as in low-income countries, this year’s conference will focus on “Debt: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” and will bring together researchers and policymakers to discuss innovative research in this area and facilitate the exchange of views.

The Program Committee welcomes empirical and theoretical work on topics including, but not limited to:

• Composition of debt and its evolution; issues of maturity and currency denomination;
• Debt challenges for frontier markets;
• Household debt;
• Corporate debt;
• Role of policies in smoothing private sector deleveraging;
• Role of low global interest rates in driving debt dynamics;
• Cyclicality of fiscal policy;
• Sustainability of debt;
• Sovereign debt and default;
• Debt restructuring and relief;
• Debt and fiscal policy in currency unions.

Interested contributors should submit a draft paper or a detailed proposal by June 1, 2019. Please use the contact author’s name as the name of the file. The Program Committee will evaluate all proposals in terms of originality, analytical rigor, and policy relevance and will contact the authors whose papers have been selected by mid-July, 2019*. Travel and hotel expenses of presenting authors will be covered by the conference organizers. Further information on the conference program will be posted on the IMF website (

Conference Program Committee: Emine Boz (IMF, Co-Editor of the IMF Economic Review), Guzman Gonzalez-Torres (Bank of Italy and IMF), Luciana Juvenal (IMF), Weicheng Lian (IMF), Giovanni Melina (IMF), Andrea Presbitero (IMF), Marika Santoro (IMF) and Linda Tesar (Editor-in-Chief of the IMF Economic Review and the University of Michigan)

Senior Conference Coordinator: Tracey Lookadoo

*Submissions co-authored with IMF staff members will be evaluated by the IMF Economic Review editor-in-chief

Central Bank of Chile, International Monetary Fund, and IMF Economic Review: “Current Policy Challenges Facing Emerging Markets”

Santiago, Chile—July 24–25, 2019

The Central Bank of Chile, the International Monetary Fund, and the IMF Economic Review are inviting paper submissions for a conference on “Current Policy Challenges Facing Emerging Markets” to be held in Santiago on July 24-25, 2019.

Rising trade barriers, weak commodity prices, the ongoing monetary policy normalization in advanced economies, and the increased volatility of world capital markets create a challenging global environment for emerging markets. These challenges are further complicated by domestic vulnerabilities in the public sector, financial intermediaries and the private sector. Against this background, this conference aims to assemble an outstanding set of academic contributions on topics related to the key policy challenges facing emerging market economies.

The conference organizers seek both theoretical and empirical research contributions on a broad set of topics that are of central importance to these economies. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:

• Financial integration and capital flows;
• Monetary policy normalization in large economies and effects on emerging markets;
• Macroprudential, monetary, and exchange rate policies in emerging markets;
• Fiscal policies and sovereign debt;
• Implications of rising trade barriers for emerging markets;
• Corporate vulnerabilities;
• Distributional effects of policies in emerging markets.

Please send submissions in Adobe PDF format to. Selected papers will be considered for publication in a special issue of the IMF Economic Review. Along with your submission, please indicate whether you also want to contribute to this issue. Papers that are not being submitted to the Review are also welcome.

Deadline for submissions is March 15, 2019. Authors of accepted papers will be informed by April 15. Preference will be given to finished papers. The conference sponsors will fund travel and accommodation expenses for speakers (one per paper) and discussants.

Organizing Committee:
Laura Alfaro (Harvard Business School and Guest Editor, IMF Economic Review)
Emine Boz (IMF and Co-Editor, IMF Economic Review)
Enrique Mendoza (University of Pennsylvania and Guest Editor, IMF Economic Review)
Ernesto Pastén (Central Bank of Chile)
Diego Saravia (Central Bank of Chile)
Linda Tesar (University of Michigan and Editor, IMF Economic Review)

IMF Conference Coordinator:
Tracey Lookadoo