Markus Loewe is senior economist at the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) (Bonn), where he has been working since 1999. He studied economics, political science and Arabic in Tübingen, Erlangen and Damascus and got his PhD from the University of Heidelberg for a thesis on micro-insurance schemes. His main areas of interest are social protection, poverty reduction / MDGs and investment promotion in developing countries. In addition, he has also published on demographic development, pro-poor growth, anti-corruption policies, economic governance, private sector development and the impact of the recent global financial and economic crisis. His most recent publications include The global financial crisis and the Arab world: impact, reactions and consequences (2010, in: Mediterranean Politics 15, 1, 45-71, with Juliane Brach); Pension schemes and pension reforms in the Middle East and North Africa (2009, Geneva: UNRISD); How favoritism affects the business climate: Empirical evidence from Jordan (2008, in: The Middle East Journal 62, 2, 259–276, with Jonas Blume und Johanna Speer).
A “good business environment” has been cited over and over as a decisive factor for SME development. Yet upgrading a micro enterprise to a small or medium-sized business requires a lot more than that, argue Caroline Reeg and Markus Loewe.
Twenty years ago, a new idea emerged: development policy should no longer be assessed on the basis of who was doing what. Rather, there should be a manageable set of key goals that every relevant actor could agree upon.