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Measuring Integration Achievement in the Americas

Part of the United Nations University Series on Regionalism book series (UNSR,volume 13)


In this chapter an updated version is presented of the Integration Achievement Score (IAS) that was initially designed by Hufbauer and Schott (Western hemisphere economic integration. Institute for International Economics, Washington, DC, 1994). The author expanded the scope of the original IAS in both time and space, and has systematically applied it to regional integration schemes in the Americas with data from the 2000s. Because of its systematic nature of coding integration achievements, it allows for comparisons between the regional schemes; it is also well suited for further econometric analysis. It contains six categories with six levels each. The categories are: trade in goods and services, free movement of capital, labor mobility, decision-making of supranational institutions, monetary coordination, and fiscal coordination. Moreover; the levels for each regional scheme are calculated with a set of values that range from 0 to 5. Results are presented for five schemes in the Americas (CAN, CACM, CARICOM, MERCOSUR, NAFTA) which allow for a comparison of economic integration levels.


  • Indicators
  • Economic integration

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-50860-3_6
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Fig. 6.1
Fig. 6.2
Fig. 6.3


  1. 1.

    Systematic measures that can travel across all regions should not be viewed as a way to normatively judge (praise or criticize) RIOs. Scientific analysis is not interested in promoting integration nor is it interested in suppressing it. In other words, assessing regional integration is not an exercise akin to judging a beauty contest. The aim is to develop techniques to compare apples with apples so that we have generalizable findings.

  2. 2.

    The Spanish name is Comunidad Andina or CAN.

  3. 3.

    In Spanish, it is referred to as the Mercado Común Centroamericano.

  4. 4.

    SICA stands for the Sistema de la Integración Centroamericana.

  5. 5.

    Given that many of the members are also members of the British Commonwealth or are still territories of Britain, their head of state is the monarch. Therefore, heads of government meet instead of heads of state.

  6. 6.

    MERCOSUR is the Spanish acronym for Mercado Común del Sur. MERCOSUR is also known in Brazil as MERCOSUL which is the Portuguese acronym for Mercado Comum do Sul.

  7. 7.

    Chile borders the Pacific Ocean and therefore gives MERCOSUR a key link to the markets of the Far East.

  8. 8.

    The working groups are split up into the following areas: communications, mining, technical regulations, financial matters, transportation and infrastructure, industry, agriculture, energy, labor relations, employment, and social security.

  9. 9.

    But they do have a single website.


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Correspondence to Gaspare M. Genna .

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Genna, G.M. (2017). Measuring Integration Achievement in the Americas. In: De Lombaerde, P., Saucedo Acosta, E. (eds) Indicator-Based Monitoring of Regional Economic Integration. United Nations University Series on Regionalism, vol 13. Springer, Cham.

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