Central Bank of Ireland

Claire Jones

Next to the Georgian splendour of the buildings that flank it, the brutal modernism of the Central Bank of Ireland’s Dame Street headquarters stands out. 

That it does is deliberate. Its architect, Sam Stephenson, was keen to shake off the associations that Dublin’s architecture had with the country’s colonial past.

It’s ironic, then, that the ‘Occupy Dame Street’ movement – which RTÉ reports is a call for the EU and IMF “to stay out of Ireland’s affairs” – has set up camp outside the central bank. 

Claire Jones

As the IMF knows only too well, groupthink played a key role in policymakers’ inability to spot the risk of a major financial crisis. Could it be that globalisation contributed to this rise of groupthink? Central Bank of Ireland governor Patrick Honohan thinks so.

Since the era of David Ricardo, most – though not all – economists have extolled the virtues of global trade.

Mr Honohan’s comments are far from a damning critique. But the central bank governor points out that globalisation can “turbo charge” booms and busts in small open economies such as Ireland’s. Why?