Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Development Thinking Summarised

Stefan Dercon takes the top 10 thinkers (I actually counted 11…hmm, Nigel Tufnel anyone?) in development economics, and condenses each of their beliefs into one or two sentences (excerpt):

10 top thinkers on Development, summarized in 700 words by Stefan Dercon

One of the treats of my role at LSE is luring in some great development thinkers to lecture on Friday afternoons, andStefan Dercon then sitting in to enjoy the show. Stefan Dercon came in just before the Christmas break and was typically brilliant, witty and waspish. Particularly enjoyable from an outgoing DFID chief economist (as well as Prof at the Blavatnik School of Government and Director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies).

Stefan gave us a tour of the ‘Big Ideals, Big Egos and Big Thinkers in development’. Here they are, points for recognizing them. For the answers, go to the bottom of this post and see their books – extra point if you have read them all. He celebrated the quality of the books, the way they have brought development ideas to a mass audience, the impact they have had on the ‘public conversation’ around the way the world works. And then came a wonderful ‘digested read’ summary:

It's a very concise summary, and probably doesn't capture all the nuances of each perspective, but as a shorthand beginners introduction to the topic, this is hard to beat.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, at one level, sustainable development is easy. Invest in universal education, public health and social security, and in the long run, I am sure the economy will grow in an inclusive way.

    That said, the short-term outcomes are unpredictable and highly variable, within and between countries. Some countries are more fortunate than others in terms of better institutions, no civil wars, no ethnic conflict, less corrupt politicians, conscientious public servants, etc.

    But I feel sure that in the long-run, investing in education, health and social security pays off.