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Faculty/ PhD Seminar Series: Text- mining IMF country reports – a novel global dataset

The CEU Campus
Wednesday, January 16, 2019, 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

The School of Public Policy at Central European University and the Political Economy Research Group cordially invites you to the SPP Research Seminar

Akos Mate (Junior Visiting Researcher, SPP) – David Mihalyi (Research Fellow, SPP)

Text- mining IMF country reports – a novel global dataset

The IMF continuously monitors the economic and financial policies of all its member countries and provides their governments policy advice. The IMF publishes the work they have carried out in the form of yearly country reports. The text of these reports provide a unique in-depth window into the key macroeconomic issues as perceived by IMF staff, IMF board and country officials. They provide indications of the perceived policy weaknesses, risks to financial or economic stability, ongoing reforms and uptaken or neglected policy advice.

We built and plan to release publicly a novel dataset using the text of the publicly available IMF
country reports based on Article IV consultations and IMF program reviews. It is a panel dataset covering the years 2004-2017 and 189 countries, where the (relative) frequency of selected keywords within relevant country reports can be used as the unit of observation. First, we provide a brief background. Then we present how the dataset was compiled and how it can be used for text analytics. Third, we present how the dataset might help in answering particular research questions across a few different topics in public finance. Finally, we discuss certain limiting features of the dataset.

Link to the paper: