• Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI)

    We help you to identify topics and create changes.

  • Upcoming event

    Policy Dialogue
    Sustainable decommissioning of offshore wind parks – challenges and perspectives in the light of Circular Economy principles

    28 September 2022, Hanse-Office in Brussels

  • September 16, 2022

    HWWI Commodity Price Index rises further in August

  • September 10, 2022

    The Emperor’s Geography - City Locations, Nature, and Institutional Optimisation

  • August 26, 2022

    Job offers: Research assistant 

  • July 6, 2022

    Laying the foundations for a BSR S3 Ecosystem: New reports out on circular bioeconomy value chains and S3 in BSR

  • May 25, 2022

    Navigating Rough Waters: Global Shipping and Challenges for the North Range Ports

  • ABOUT US

    The Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI) is an independent, privately financed economic research institute.

     

    HWWI's roots go back to 1908 when the Institute was founded by Hamburg merchants who wanted to understand the global economy, its state and perspectives. In this regard, the HWWI is the oldest economic research institute in Germany.

     

    The Hamburg Chamber of Commerce is the sole shareholder of the HWWI. The Helmut Schmidt University is an associated scientific partner of the Institute.

  • RESEARCH AREAS

    The HWWI's research activity spans over four research areas.

    © hxdyl / Shutterstock.com

    Business cycle and growth

     

    Traditionally, the gross domestic product (GDP), i.e. the sum of produced goods and services expressed in monetary values, represents a central prosperity indicator of national economies in economics. Economists have always been concerned with the question of which factors favour or inhibit economic growth, in order to be able to draw economic policy conclusions on how the long-term prosperity of national economies can be secured or improved. The HWWI's research activities focus on the determinants of economic growth, and explicitly include broader concepts of measuring societal prosperity, such as life satisfaction, in its considerations.

     

    Economies typically do not develop linearly along their long-term growth path. Rather, in all economies, short to medium-term fluctuations in economic activity around the growth path can be observed, so-called business cycles. Business cycle fluctuations are often associated with frictions such as unemployment and inflation, which generate an inefficient use of economic resources. In today's highly globalised world with its complex international supply chains, there is a pronounced international business cycle. Due to the strong international interdependence of financial, commodity and goods markets, this link is particularly evident in times of financial crisis, wars or indeed pandemics. The HWWI researches the international business cycle and analyses its probable consequences for the German economy. In this context, the HWWI regularly forecasts German economic development and also prepares a regional economic forecast for Hamburg. For this purpose, the HWWI uses the results of the quarterly business survey of member companies provided by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce. The survey data is also used to analyse the development of individual sectors or types of companies. The HWWI pays particular attention to medium-sized enterprises, where ownership and management are generally in one hand.

     

    In the course of its economic and growth research, the HWWI also deals intensively with the development of the prices of various commodities. At the centre of the analyses is the HWWI Commodity Price Index, in which the world market prices of the most important products from all sub-segments of commodity trade are recorded and condensed into a meaningful index with the help of an objective weighting methodology. The weekly recalculation on the basis of the latest data ensures that the information is up-to-date and generates high-frequency time series data for differentiated trend and volatility analyses.

     

    Our publications

    © iStock.com / Arie J. Jager

    Environment and climate

     

    Over the course of industrialisation and the resulting economic growth, the environment became increasingly affected and this continues to the present day. For a long time, little emphasis was placed on environmentally sound production processes and consumption. The main reason for this is the occurrence of external effects, where the producer or consumer of a good does not have to bear all (if any of) the economic consequences of his actions. If, for example, wastewater can be discharged into public waters or exhaust gas into the air, the polluters save on cleaning or disposal costs and as a result, excessive environmentally damaging behaviours occur. The overexploitation of the earth's environmental resources is becoming increasingly visible. Moreover, according to overwhelmingly unanimous opinion, the production techniques and consumption habits used have contributed significantly to the ongoing process of global warming, and will probably continue to do so in the future.

     

    Against this background, the HWWI is conducting intensive research in the field of environmental and climate economics. The aim is to show how economic instruments can be used to reconcile economic activity and the environment, and to internalise external effects appropriately. Since many environmental goods cross borders, these analyses must necessarily be carried out in an international context.

     

    The HWWI is particularly intensively involved with climate-economic issues. Research is conducted on how climate change affects the prosperity and subjective well-being of societies, the attitudes of the population towards climate protection and climate policy, and which climate policy measures seem suitable for limiting global warming. Particular attention is paid to the question of how climate-related extreme weather events (such as droughts, floods or storms), which now occur with greater frequency or intensity in the wake of climate change, influence economic activity, and how negative effects can be prevented or at least limited.

     

    Our publications

    © iStock.com / TommL

    Migration and integration

     

    Over the course of industrialisation and the resulting economic growth, the environment became increasingly affected and this continues to the present day. For a long time, little emphasis was placed on environmentally sound production processes and consumption. The main reason for this is the occurrence of external effects, where the producer or consumer of a good does not have to bear all (if any of) the economic consequences of his actions. If, for example, wastewater can be discharged into public waters or exhaust gas into the air, the polluters save on cleaning or disposal costs and as a result, excessive environmentally damaging behaviours occur. The overexploitation of the earth's environmental resources is becoming increasingly visible. Moreover, according to overwhelmingly unanimous opinion, the production techniques and consumption habits used have contributed significantly to the ongoing process of global warming, and will probably continue to do so in the future.

     

    Against this background, the HWWI is conducting intensive research in the field of environmental and climate economics. The aim is to show how economic instruments can be used to reconcile economic activity and the environment, and to internalise external effects appropriately. Since many environmental goods cross borders, these analyses must necessarily be carried out in an international context.

     

    The HWWI is particularly intensively involved with climate-economic issues. Research is conducted on how climate change affects the prosperity and subjective well-being of societies, the attitudes of the population towards climate protection and climate policy, and which climate policy measures seem suitable for limiting global warming. Particular attention is paid to the question of how climate-related extreme weather events (such as droughts, floods or storms), which now occur with greater frequency or intensity in the wake of climate change, influence economic activity, and how negative effects can be prevented or at least limited.

     

    Our publications

    © Karl-Heinz Spremberg

    Spatial economics

    Spatial factors play a significant role in many economic issues. For example, how intensively two regions trade with each other will depend, among other things, on how far apart they are, as this has an effect on transport costs. Geographical factors such as topography can also play a role in the level of transport costs. But spatial factors do not only play a role in foreign trade. The distance to the destination, for example, often plays a role in migration decisions as well, since greater distances are often accompanied by greater cultural differences. Companies evaluate locations not only according to the conditions at the location itself, but also take into account the conditions in the immediately surrounding area, for example against the background of attracting suitable personnel who may have to commute. And the effects of research institutions also often radiate into the surrounding area.

     

    The HWWI sees itself as a specialist in the presentation and analysis of spatial data. On the one hand, the classic methods of spatial econometrics are used, which typically involve data from official statistics at the level of regional authorities. In the course of growing digitalisation, even very small-scale geo-referenced data are often available today, which mostly come from remote sensing (for example aerial photographs, satellite images, radar) or from mobile end-devices with GPS signals. Today, survey data is also often geo-referenced. The HWWI uses all these data sources to make spatial analyses possible, taking advantage of the modern methods of econometrics and machine learning.

     

    Our publications

  • PROJECTS

    An overview of our current international projects.

    MICADO – Migrant Integration Cockpits and Dashboards. MICADO provides innovative communication and interaction tools for managing the integration of migrants in cities across the EU, to be piloted in Hamburg, Madrid, Bologna and Antwerp. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 innovation action Programme under grant agreement No 822717.

     

    © RBWC

    The CLEVER Cities project uses nature-based solutions to address urban challenges and promote social inclusion in cities across Europe, South America and China. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 innovation action Programme under grant agreement No 776604.

     

    Project "Baltic Game Industry – Empowering a Booster for Regional Development" (BGI) aims at boosting the game industry in the Baltic Sea region (BSR), increasing the capacity for innovation and transforming the game industry in the region into a global player with worldwide competitiveness. BGI is an Interreg North Sea Region project started in October 2017, with a duration of 3 years.

    Project "Strengthening smart specialisation by fostering transnational cooperation (GoSmart BSR)" is implemented with the support from the European Regional Development Fund Baltic Sea Region Programme 2014-2020. From October 2017 to September 2020 project unites 8 partners from 7 countries, and it aims to increase capacity of innovation actors to apply smart specialisation approach.

    COMBINE aims at enhancing the share of combined transport (CT) in the Baltic Sea Region in order to make transport more efficient and environmentally friendly. COMBINE is co-financed by the Baltic Sea Region Programme (ERDF). The COMBINE project began in January 2019 and will run until June 2021.

     

    The DUAL Ports project will ultimately enhance ports’ energy efficiency and performance, facilitating low carbonization at reduced cost, with added value in terms of knowledge and investment. DUAL Ports is an Interreg North Sea Region project started in December 2015, with a duration of 3 years.

    © RBWC

    REPLACE - REgional PoLicy Actions for Circular Economy - has the goal of integrating, deploying and capitalizing on lessons learnt through the H2020 project SCREEN by engaging policy-makers and managing authorities with the common objective of improving Regional Operational Programmes (ROPs) to enhance CE performances, aligning with the European Commission's Circular Economy Action Plan.

     

    © RBWC

    The Dialogue of Continents, organized by the Reinventing Bretton Woods Committee and the Hamburg Institute for International Economics.

     

    DecomTools is a part of the Interreg North Sea Region Programme. The project focuses on the sustainable and efficient decommissioning of offshore wind farms after the end of their life cycle. Both cost and emissions of decommissioning are to be driven down, demonsrated by pilot actions. The duration of the project will be four years. The total budget amounts to approximately 4.7 million euros.

     

    The project BIO-PLASTICS EUROPE addresses the topic „Sustainable solutions for bio-based plastics on land and sea”. It intends to develop sustainable strategies and solutions for bio-plastic products. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 innovation action Programme.

     

    The BSR S3 Ecosystem platform aligns smart specialisation initiatives to better steer investments across the Baltic Sea region. By sharing best practices, it activates research and academic communities, industry and public entities to strengthen the regional innovation ecosystem. The platform builds on the experiences of Interreg Baltic Sea Region’s projects LARS,BSR Stars S3, Smart-up BSR and GoSmart BSR, as well as S34 Growth, BIOREGIO, ClusterFy and TraCS3, co-founded by Interreg Europe.

     

  • SERVICES

    Where there are far-reaching decisions to be made, be they political or economic in nature, the basis for these decisions must be informed. For this reason, HWWI researchers generate practical knowledge to benefit cognitive interest and to impart individual expertise within our comprehensive consultation process.

     

    To meet your interests and inquiries for expertise or for dialogue, turn to the HWWI. Contact Dr. Dirck Süß (CEO) or Isabel Suenner (International Cooperation).

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    Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI)
    Oberhafenstrasse 1
    20097 Hamburg, Germany
    Telephone: +49 40 340576-0
    Fax: +49 40 340576-776
    Email: info@hwwi.org

     

    Registered office of the gemeinnuetzige GmbH: Amtsgericht Hamburg, HRB 94303
    Value added tax identification number: DE 241849425
    CEO: Dr. Dirck Süß