Common advice to public speakers is to start with a joke. So perhaps outgoing Prime Minister Chris Hipkins was only joking when he kept saying, “We are winning the battle against inflation”. Read more
Dr Dennis Wesselbaum
Dennis is a Senior Lecturer in Economics at the University of Otago, the Vice President of the New Zealand Association of Economists, Editor-in-Chief of New Zealand Economic Papers and Associate Director of the University of Otago’s Economics PhD Programme.
Dennis is a macroeconomist with both theoretical and empirical interests. His research activity is split between macroeconomic topics and the impacts of climate change. His research interests are Macroeconomics (esp. Monetary and Fiscal Policy), Quantitative Economics, Economic Growth, Migration, and, more generally, the interaction between climate, environment, and society.
He earned a Diploma in (Theoretical) Economics from the University in Kiel and received his Doctorate (Doctor rerum politicarum) from the University of Hamburg. In between, he worked as a researcher for the Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
Dennis’ personal website can be found at: https://sites.google.com/site/denniswesselbaum/home
The Prime Minister has ruled out a wealth tax so long as he is leader of the Labour Party. The promise may have been driven by recent polling, but it is sound economics nevertheless. Read more
New Zealand’s universities are in crisis. AUT announced 170 academic redundancies last year. Read more
Wellington (Monday, 19 June 2023) – The New Zealand Initiative has revealed that Victoria and Otago Universities employ more non-academic than academic staff, a situation prevalent in all New Zealand universities for the past decade. The findings, prepared by Drs. Read more
If a lot of the government’s health policy people started looking warmly at homeopathy and other kinds of medical pseudoscience and woo, we’d all recognise that as a problem, right? Maybe we would want to test our intuitions about it. Read more
Wellington (Wednesday, 23 November 2022) – In the leadup to today’s Official Cash Rate decision, New Zealand’s economists warn that inflation expectations are unhinged and that government deficits are worsening the problem. They also remind us that New Zealand cannot maintain current employment levels by accepting high inflation rates. Read more
If you lecture in the theatre and no student is there to hear it, did anybody learn? Welcome to teaching at universities in 2022. Read more
The monetary and fiscal policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic set the stage for the inflation we are currently experiencing. In the debate about what drives inflation and who is to blame, one important element has not received the attention it deserves: the coordination between monetary and fiscal policy. Read more
Politicians are recently pushing for a large-scale adoption of battery electric vehicles (BEV; currently <1% of vehicles in NZ) to reduce the emissions generated by the transport sector. The emissions reduction plan supports this with $1.2bn of spending, of which $569m are used for the “Clean Car Upgrade” programme. Read more
Oliver Hartwich and Dennis Wesselbaum discuss Germany's outlook. To listen to our latest podcasts, please subscribe to The New Zealand Initiative podcast on iTunes, Spotify or The Podcast App. Read more
Inflation in New Zealand has been on the rise (7.3 percent last quarter) as have the attempts to explain it. The RBNZ points to strong global economic activity, supply disruptions, and the Ukraine war. Read more
The media has largely ignored economics in the last couple of years. The return of inflation, however, has brought economic topics back into people’s minds and into media coverage. Read more