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Dr. David Robinson

Make no little plans, my son

Make no little plans, my son

As an economist, I often get calls from the media about national and provincial issues. As an economist who studies economic development in Northern Ontario, I don’t get many calls.
We could have been a contender

We could have been a contender

I had a question I wanted to ask philosopher Adam Smith. Smith spent a lot of time thinking about why some countries are rich and others, with the same resources, are poor.
Dead man walking

Dead man walking

The online Urban Dictionary defines a “dead man walking” as “an employee who is certain to be fired in the near future.
You asked for it

You asked for it

On April 8, 2013, Ron Johnson was fired as the CEO of J.C. Penney. Johnson was the guy who basically invented the Apple store. His stores made more money per square foot than any retail operation in history. Johnson was a retail genius.
Make it so, Number One

Make it so, Number One

The 21st century can be Ontario’s century. The Ontario we know is already an astonishing success. It is one of the richest, most peaceful, best educated and most productive regions in the world.
Michael Gravel, meet the Wizard of Dev

Michael Gravel, meet the Wizard of Dev

Let’s imagine that our beloved minister of Northern development and mines, Michael Gravelle, decides to consult one of the world’s leading experts on development for areas like Northern Ontario.
Bob Rae, John Nash and innovation in the Ring of Fire

Bob Rae, John Nash and innovation in the Ring of Fire

My students should have paid me for giving them the chance to see Bob Rae in action. Not just because Rae is a professional negotiator and the class deals with Nash Bargaining theory.
Do sheep look up?

Do sheep look up?

It should be easy to write a quick summary of the economy of Northern Ontario. After all, I have been writing about the Northern economy for years. I am one of the so-called “experts” that the CBC calls for comments.
Not paying the rent

Not paying the rent

One of the best things about teaching is that you actually learn more than your students do. I teach Natural Resource Economics at Laurentian University and I’ve learned a few strange things about Ontario’s mining policy.
What is it about three strikes that you don’t understand?

What is it about three strikes that you don’t understand?

Here we are halfway though the playoff game in Canada’s Export Industry League. Alberta’s Big Oil Consortium (BOC) has been whipping Central Canada Manufacturing (CCM). Energy exports have seen a $63.