Think Tanks and Economic Policy Debate in the Brazilian 2014 Presidential Election

Thursday, 14 July 2016: 10:00
Location: Hörsaal 23 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Elisa KLUGER, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
Over the last 13 years, two sets of think tanks coordinated by Brazilian economists were created to gather those who have similar perspectives on economic matters, to produce knowledge and promote debates about the economic policies. Even if they aren’t officially connected to the political parties, they tend to aggregate economists from different political fractions and are very active in electoral campaign periods. The first one to be created was the Casa das Garças, in Rio de Janeiro, that congregates many economists that have worked for the Social Democrat government, which held the federal administration from 1994 to 2002. Once they lost the presidency, they decided to create a think tank intending to articulate the economic debate, coordinate the criticism and start to design programs for future elections. A similar version, the Centro de Debates de Políticas Públicas, appeared in São Paulo in 2014, also committed to the task of enhancing the economic debate and elaborate alternative public policies. On the other side, most of those economists who support the Workers’ Party administration, which has been in office since 2003, are assembled under the Centro Celso Furtado de Políticas para o Desenvolvimento. The center is named after one of the first and most famous Brazilian development economists: Celso Furtado, thus, they associate their political visions to his legacy and perspectives. The goal of this communication is to compare the events promoted and the written material produced by each one of these organizations in 2014, which was the last electoral year. The analysis of the content produced by them and of the positions occupied by those economists in the social space will be based on the knowledge accumulated, over the last 5 years, by a PhD research on the field of economists in Brazil.