PAGE Green Team and the UNDCO teamed up for a training on macroeconomic modelling held on 13-14 December. Titled “Advancing a green and fair economic transformation in a crisis-driven World: The role of macro-economic modelling”, the two-day course aimed to reinforce the capacity of key stakeholders working on economic policy and national planning to use and interpret different modelling approaches for supporting a green and fair economic transformation, leveraging global PAGE tools and expertise. It also marked the growth of a close collaboration between PAGE and DCO.
Asad Naqvi, head of the PAGE Secretariat, indicated in his opening remarks “A Green Economy is an economy in which the growth of jobs and income is driven by policies in investments with the objective of addressing global sustainability and social inequality challenges. To make that happen, we cannot take a siloed approach. That is where system dynamic modelling has been an extremely useful tool for us (PAGE) by helping us to look at the 3 dimensions of sustainable development together.”
The course facilitated discussions on the strengths and weaknesses of different modelling tools and approaches, on modelling a global inclusive and green recovery from Covid-19, and how to understand and explain the different results obtained by using different models.
Additionally, it featured panel discussions on how economic modelling can help governments reconcile long term policy priorities, while responding to multiple crises in the short term, how models could be useful to the increased ambitions of many countries that are aiming for a net zero scenario and what is the role of the UN system in supporting macroeconomic modelling for informed decision making.
Participants also undertook a collaborative group exercise on qualitative modelling and engaged in peer exchange. The concern regarding availability of adequate data for modelling, the need to increase awareness amongst the government on the use of GE modelling tools, the importance of aligning various sectoral modelling processes in the country, the difficulties in keeping models updated, and the need to build capacity at national statistical institutions are some of the interesting reflections and thoughts which emerged from these discussions.
The course also marked the growth of a close collaboration between DCO and PAGE, in particular the Green Team. Angus Mackay, Director, Division for Planet at UNITAR and PAGE Management Board member, underlined “The relevance of our work at PAGE for countries is much more enhanced, when we combine it and align it with what the RCO system is doing on the ground, and that system brings in, of course, nationally based economic expert teams, but also a political economy perspective, which is another key reason for this engaging teaming up with DCO” .
Both entities are currently exploring options for further collaboration and scaling up, including catalytic policy dialogues and workshops, co-creation of policy options, as well as a pilot series of trainings focusing on Tools for Supporting a Fair and Green Economic Transformation.
Marta Cali, Chief of Policy, at DCO commented: “We believe that the mission of PAGE goes to the very heart of the rationale of the UN development system reforms. We know that in order to realise this fair and green economic transformation the PAGE is seeking to promote, we need to be able to support National Governments in their need to advance these integrated policies that consider the synergies, the trade-offs between the various priority issues… Through this training we want to mainly help UN CTs help governments deliver such integrated policy responses at national level.”
More concretely, following this course, PAGE and DCO are looking forward to the in-depth and advanced training planned for 2023, which will commence with a call for expression of interest from interested participants in January 2023, followed by a detailed learning needs assessment to help tailor the perfect training modules which caters to the needs of RCO economists at the country level.
The Green Transformation Economic Advisory Mechanism (Green Team) brings together economists from RCOs, PAGE agencies, UN Regional Economic Commissions as well as international and national think tanks and experts. The work of the Green Team ranges from country-level specific support to the contribution to knowledge sharing at global and national level.
PAGE brings together the specialized expertise of five United Nations agencies to accelerate a just transition to a low carbon, resource efficient, nature friendly and socially inclusive economy.
Source: PAGE, UNITAR