Economists have long relied on cross-country regression analysis to identify the determinants of continued growth, but with only limited success. This book demonstrates the value of a different approach.
The editors isolate three attributes that appear to be associated with long-term growth. First, whatever the form of the decision-making authority, all are ultimately subject to an element of political constraint: the population at large must eventually experience the benefits of growth if the authority is to remain in power. Broad-based growth is therefore required for growth to be sustained. Second, given the complexity and dynamism of the world, and our imperfect understanding of how it works, ideological rigidity will inevitably prove disastrous, whereas pragmatism and responsiveness to changing conditions and to ineffective policy initiatives are more likely to prolong growth. Third, unconventional substitutes can fill critical gaps while more formal institutions are being developed, thus hastening the growth process in the short run.
Drawing on the knowledge and understanding of local circumstances of researchers from the case-study countries, this book will appeal to post-graduate students studying development; particularly poverty, trade, investment and migration. Development practitioners concerned with the impact of developed-country policies on poverty in the developing world will also find this a captivating read.