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Be an Effective Agent for Change! a post-graduate course in Education for Sustainability

Supplementary Digital Study Packs----------------------------------- Palgrave Study Skills

Selected texts by Manuel Castells and Saskia Sassen
( this texts are available  for my students in The Bartlett  Development Planning Unit (University College London) and Education for Sustainability Programme (London South Bank University)

Róbinson Rojas on
Managing and Planning for Development: International and National Dimensions (Part 1)
  See Notes for lectures, Workshops, Slide presentations and Seminars.

Basic notions on managing and planning for development, the role of the state, markets and civil and military bureaucracy, NGOs and other civil society organizations in the development process. It places national development in the context of the international division of production and examines alternatives to hegemonic development practices. It critically reviews the recent history of international aid, particularly its implications for poverty reduction, growth and equity.

From the World Bank Group
Policy Research Report: Localizing Development: Does Participation Work? - 2011

Localizing Development: Does Participation Work?, a new Policy Research Report analyzing community development and decentralization projects, shows that such projects often fail to be sensitive to complex contexts – including social, political, historical and geographical realities – and fall short in terms of monitoring and evaluation systems, which hampers learning.
Citing numerous examples, including projects and programs supported by the World Bank, the authors demonstrate that participatory projects are not a substitute for weak states, but instead require strong central support to be effective.

I highly recommend Eleven Basic Readings for "Globalization and the New Economic Geography"

The Economist - October 13th 2012
Special Report
World Economy

The world economy
For richer, for poorer
True Progressivism.- The new politics of capitalism and inequality

"Growing inequality is one of the biggest social, economic and political challenges of our time. But it is not inevitable," says Zanny Minton Beddoes
  • For richer, for poorer
    ..."although the modern global economy is leading to wider gaps between the more and the less educated, a big driver of today’s income distributions is government policy. Second, a lot of today’s inequality is inefficient, particularly in the most unequal countries. It reflects market and government failures that also reduce growth. And where this is happening, bigger income gaps themselves are likely to reduce both social mobility and future prosperity..."
  • History: As you were
    "...there was also a successful progressive prescription for reducing income gaps and boosting mobility by attacking crony capitalism, investing in the young (especially by broadening access to education) and creating a safety net for the poorest (particularly through unemployment insurance and pension schemes). Worryingly, governments in some of the countries where inequality has risen most seem to have forgotten that..."
  • Like a piece of string
  • Like father, not like son
  • The United States: The rich and the rest
    "...Since disparities in income, education and social behaviour now strongly reinforce each other, future mobility might be a lot lower still. A study by Sean Reardon of Stanford University suggests that the gap in standardised test scores between schoolchildren from high- and low-income families is roughly 30-40% bigger today than it was 25 years ago. Bob Putnam, of Harvard University, puts it starkly. Put away the rear-view mirror and look at future social mobility, he says, and “we’re about to go over a cliff...”
  • Makers and takers
  • Asia: Crony tigers, divided dragons
    "...The stakes are high. Yu Jiantuo of the China Development Research Foundation argues that China’s inequality is now hurting its growth prospects. Sustained cronyism could turn Asia’s big economies into entrenched oligarchies rather than dynamic meritocracies. Ironically, in that sense they might become more like Latin America just as that continent appears to be moving in the opposite direction..."
  • Lessons from Palanpur
  • Latin America: Gini back in the bottle
    "...If the improvements in inequality are to be maintained, let alone continued, tough choices will have to be made. Middle-class entitlements will need to be squeezed. Much like the United States, many Latin countries will have to decide whether to invest in poorer kids or continue to pay generous pensions to richer old people. In both places the social contract needs to be remade. For evidence that this is possible, turn to Sweden..."
  • Sweden: The new model
    "...All these case studies indicate that the geography of contemporary inequality has as much to do with government policy as with underlying economic forces. But it has not been a simple tale of tax and redistribution, nor is there a simple trade-off between efficiency and inequality. Sweden’s economy has become much more efficient while still keeping inequality low. America’s system of taxes and transfers is less progressive than it was in the 1970s, yet the state is no smaller. That suggests there is room for reforms that both counter inequality and improve economies’ efficiency..."
  • Trade-offs: Having your cake
    "...Less inequality does not need to mean less efficiency..."
  • Policy prescriptions: A True Progressivism
    " most countries other than United States, government spending is a much more important tool for combating inequality than the tax system..."
World Development Report 2013: Jobs

Moving Jobs to the Center Stage
Recent world developments have put jobs at the center of the policy debate. The global financial crisis has resulted in massive job losses in both emerging and industrial countries. In the latter, there is concern about a jobless recovery; in the former, a comeback cannot hide workers’ vulnerability to shocks. Political upheavals in the Arab world highlight the discontent of educated youth whose employment opportunities fall far short of expectations. The political upheavals could boost transparency and accountability in the region, but if jobs do not follow they could lead to greater instability.
These developments create a sense of urgency, but they remind us that jobs are the cornerstone of economic and social development. Most development work is related to jobs, even if we, as development practitioners, do not always articulate it in that way. We approach jobs from different angles: infrastructure development, competition, innovation policies, or skills upgrading. But we tend to do so in silos.

From ECLAC 2012

Time for Equity: closing gaps, opening trails

(2 July 2012) "Planning for development is back with a renewed strength and complex challenges," said today the Deputy Executive Secretary of ECLAC Antonio Prado, when opening the commemorative seminar to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Latin American and Caribbean Institute for Economic and Social Planning (ILPES) at the organization's headquarters in Santiago, Chile.
"Closing the multiple gaps in the region takes a long-term vision, strategic planning and long-lasting persistence," highlighted Prado at the international seminar that will conclude tomorrow. "The State must be capable of providing strategic management for the long run, looking ahead, and being involved in the design of strategies for guiding national development," he emphasized.

The Feasibility of the Democratic Developmental State in the South.
Edited by Daniel A. Omoweh. Dakar, CODESRIA, 2012, 180 p., ISBN: 978-2-86978-512-0

The state has a role to play in any economy, especially in the provision of public goods. But the majority of the states in the South lack the capacity to perform such a minimal task. This is partly because the concept of state capacity has not been well articulated and understood in both scholarly and policy circles; nor has the politically-created process that will result in the transformation of the state from an ‘incapable’ state into a ‘capable’ one been underway.

From the Economic Commission for Africa
Economic Report on Africa 2011
Governing development in Africa. The role of the state in economic transformation

The case for promoting developmental states in Africa largely rests on the inability of previous development approaches to help Africa diversify and transform its economies, generate steady and sustained high growth rates or deliver adequate levels of social development. Developmental states are constructed around a government with the political will and legitimacy to perform specified developmental functions, a professional bureaucracy that implements established national development strategies and policies, and interactive mechanisms allowing stakeholder groups to be involved in designing and carrying out policy.

Dueling Development Visions: Shaping the World Bank for the Future
Submitted by Michael Woolcock on Fri, 2012-04-13 10:36
Blogs is here

..."One can easily oversimplify differences, or render them more rigid that they often are, but answers to each of these questions can be usefully juxtaposed. The key issue is both simple and profound: What do we think ‘development’ actually is? Since the inception of the Bretton Woods institutions in the aftermath of WWII, answers to this question have steadily evolved, responding to and driving significant changes in practice. Traditionally, however, and for many still today, the core business of development is the construction of systems – building the physical and institutional infrastructure that defines a ‘modern’ economy and society.

Presidential Address - The Profession and the Crisis
Paul Krugman (2011) - Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544-1013, USA.

UNDP - 1993
Human Development Report 1993, “People’s Participation”

The Report examines how and to what extent people participate in the events and processes that shape their lives. It looks at three major means of peoples' participation: people-friendly markets, decentralised governance and community organisations, especially non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and suggests concrete policy measures to address the growing problems of increasing unemployment.

How to Outgrow an Export-Led Economy
6 October 2010 South China Morning Post
By Jong-Wha Lee, Chief Economist of the Asian Development Bank

The region needs, in sum, to reset its economic priorities. Government policies must be tailored to focus on trade, human capital, infrastructure, and financial development to build the foundation for developing Asia's next transformation - one toward sustained economic growth. With economic rebound in advanced economies likely to be gradual, developing Asia must transform itself once more to become the mantle of global growth.

Tide barriers
Capital controls would work better if there were some international norms

Oct 6th 2012 | from the print edition of The Economist

MAINSTREAM economists have had to rethink a lot as a result of the financial crisis. The cross-border flow of capital is one such area. Gyrations in money movements over the past five years (see left-hand chart) have reinforced fears that sloshing tides of capital can destabilise economies. No less an authority than the International Monetary Fund (IMF), once an ardent foe of capital controls, is now exploring when and how limits on cross-border investment might be justified.

Linn, J.F., 2006,
“State versus Market: Forever a Struggle?”,
Brookings, 2006

Economic historians tell us that swings in dominance between state and market go back many centuries. Over the last 200 years these swings seem to have gathered in speed. The industrialization process of the West in the 19th century was characterized by a dominant market and a small government sector. After World War I the state took over, not only in the Soviet Union. Western governments also assume growing roles after the Great Depression and then during and after World War II, with the rise of socialist ideology, the economic theory of "market failure" and the belief in planning by government as a way to promote a stronger economy and a better life for its citizens.

Summers, L., 2011, “Three ways to combat rising inequality”,
The Washington Post, November 21, 2011

Schuman, M., 2011,
“State capitalism vs. the free market: which performs better?” ,
Time Business, September 20, 2011

In the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, the debate over the proper role of the state in a modern economy has been reopened. In the U.S., Tea Partiers advocate their own version of “small government” to promote economic recovery, while President Barack Obama promotes more active government policy to create jobs. Others, meanwhile, wonder if Washington needs an “industrial policy” to nurture new sectors, like green energy, to help the U.S. compete with China. In Europe, politicians are grappling with how to regain competitiveness through liberalization while still maintaining the extensive social protection of their welfare states.

University College London - Development Planning Unit

Development Workshop -
Contemporary conditions and debates on development and the global system
A survey and critical analysis of the way in which the development discourse has been shaped by power relations within the global system    2012 -  2011
2010 - 2009

Session 4:
Development Management: concepts and context

Academic Year 2011/2012
4.--- Readers A, B and C  for the final debate:
(A) January  21st  2012 | The Economist | from the print edition - Special Report

The Rise of State Capitalism
The spread of a new sort of business in the emerging world will cause increasing problems

OVER the past 15 years striking corporate headquarters have transformed the great cities of the emerging world. China Central Television’s building resembles a giant alien marching across Beijing’s skyline; the 88-storey Petronas Towers, home to Malaysia’s oil company, soar above Kuala Lumpur; the gleaming office of VTB, a banking powerhouse, sits at the heart of Moscow’s new financial district. These are all monuments to the rise of a new kind of hybrid corporation, backed by the state but behaving like a private-sector multinational.
State-directed capitalism is not a new idea: witness the East India Company. But as our special report this week points out, it has undergone a dramatic revival. In the 1990s most state-owned companies were little more than government departments in emerging markets; the assumption was that, as the economy matured, the government would close or privatise them. Yet they show no signs of relinquishing the commanding heights, whether in major industries (the world’s ten biggest oil-and-gas firms, measured by reserves, are all state-owned) or major markets (state-backed companies account for 80% of the value of China’s stockmarket and 62% of Russia’s). And they are on the offensive. Look at almost any new industry and a giant is emerging: China Mobile, for example, has 600m customers. State-backed firms accounted for a third of the emerging world’s foreign direct investment in 2003-10.

PDF version of the special report

The special report by sections:
1) The visible hand
The crisis of Western liberal capitalism has coincided with the rise of a powerful new form of state capitalism in emerging markets, says Adrian Wooldridge

2) Something old, something new
A brief history of state capitalism and its variations

3) State capitalism's global reach
New masters of the universe. How state enterprise is spreading to achieve global reach

4) A choice of models
Theme and variations. It's not all the same, there are themes and variations within state capitalism

5) Pros and cons: Mixed bag
Pros and cons: SOEs are good at infrastructure projects, not so good at innovation

6) Going abroad
The world in their hands. State capitalism can look outward as well as inwards

7) The long view
And the winner is...For all its successes, state capitalism has fatal flaws...

(B) From Foreign Policy
Niall Fergusson - February 9, 2012

We're All State Capitalists Now

The debate about whether America or China will ultimately triumph is a red herring that distracts us from the real contest of our time.


The Great China Debate
Will Beijing Rule the World?
Derek Scissors and Arvind Subramanian - January/February 2012

China’s rise is overstated, and its financial problems are massive, argues Derek Scissors. Arvind Subramanian disagrees, claiming that Beijing already calls the shots in the global economy.

Academic Year 2011/2012
3.--- These readers by Aldo Ferrer and Raul Prebisch are an excellent guide to understand the dynamics of globalization under the hegemonic leadership of capitalist economic superpowers. I highly recommend them to my students in DA1 ( Management and Planning for Development ), especially for sessions 5 and 6.

From CEPAL REVIEW 101 • August 2010
Raśl Prebisch and the dilemma of development in the globalised world
Aldo Ferrer

Globalization poses both challenges and opportunities. Prebisch confronted this development dilemma in the global world and left three messages which form the great legacy of his work. Firstly, central countries form visions of the world order that serve their own interests; and peripheral countries need to rebel against this theoretical framework to resolve the dilemma. Secondly, it is possible to transform reality and achieve a symmetrical non-subordinate relationship with the world’s power centres. Thirdly, the transformation requires a fundamental change in productive structures to incorporate knowledge into economic and social activity, since this is the fundamental instrument of development. These messages remain fully current to this day.

CEPAL Review 96 - December 2008
Towards a theory of change
Raśl Prebisch

With the present article the author rounds off the series he began with “A critique of peripheral capitalism” (published in Review No. 1), and continued with “Socio-economic structure and crisis of peripheral capitalism” (No. 6) and “The neoclassical theories of economic liberalism” (No. 7). While in all the preceding articles his main concern was to offer a critical interpretation of the functioning of peripheral capitalism and to show the inability of neoclassical theory to comprehend it in depth, in this one he seeks to trace the lines along which that system should be changed.
After recalling the basic features of his critique of how capitalism works in the periphery (chapter I), he sketches the criteria by which the process of change should be guided and which, in toto, constitute a synthesis of central values of socialism and liberalism (chapter II). He then goes on to pose certain inevitable questions as to the political conditions of change, through which he reaffirms the value of democracy as the ideal foundation for a harmonious society (chapter III). The next chapters (IV and V) are devoted to completing the presentation of his ideas via the analysis of problems of change linked to technique, demand, the structure of production, the specific features of peripheral capitalism, etc. In the final chapters he slightly shifts his angle of approach in order to deal, on the one hand, with the role of centre-periphery relations in change (chapter VI); and on the other hand, with the present crisis in the centres and its repercussions on the periphery (chapter VII); ending with a few reflections on ethics, rationality and foresight (chapter VIII).
His central ideas will give rise to controversy, not only because of their provenance, but also because they pivot upon the vexed questions of appropriation and social use of the surplus. But the writer is convinced that the present crisis will not be overcome with superficial measures; if it is to be surmounted and a developed, democratic and equitable society is to be built up, the process of change will have to strike at the very roots of the system.

Academic Year 2011/2012

2.--- For a better understanding of Gabriel Palma talk "Toxic Assets and Toxic Ideology", as part of the DA2 sessions ( Birbeck Building, Malet Street, Room 421, Level 4), on Thursday, 24th November 2011 at 16.00 hours, I propose reading the 3 texts below before attending  Palma's session
( Róbinson Rojas, 3 November 2011)

Wolpe Lecture – 10 September 2009
Global Financial Crisis – Toxic Assets, Toxic Ideology
José Gabriel Palma

Economic theory has missed the crisis and cannot explain and understand what is going on. In one of the sections of the paper that accompany this talk, it deals with this problem in economic theory, but that part need only be read by economists, since it is only they who have to be convinced that the discipline of economics is useless.
What components of economics can assist us in understanding the current crisis? The Keynesian tradition is the only one that is helpful at this moment in time. Paul Krugman had a long article in the New York Times, which is a detailed self-criticism of his own macro-economic theory and provides the economic community with an opportunity to reflect on past theoretical mistakes (New York Times on 6  September 2009)( See below, P. Krugman, "How did economists get it so wrong?". Note by  Róbinson Rojas).
To understand this crisis, we have to look at the political settlement and the distribution in which it operates – this is a crisis of the political economy not an economic crisis focusing on interest rates, the role of central banks or inflation targeting. Even further, it is a neoliberal crisis, the ideology that gained power since 1979 and which was rigorously pursued by US President Regan and UK Prime Minister Thatcher. It concerns how the global capitalist elite tried to form capitalism into a rentier’s paradise and how the capitalist elite tried to use the state to further this process. How could capitalism have its cake and eat it – the rentier’s wanted all the benefits of capitalism without having to have all of the competitive struggles (all the carrots without the sticks)?
This was an attempt to transform capitalism into Gore Vidal’s idea of ‘socialism for the rich and capitalism for the rest.’
Note – all graphs were taken from the paper which accompanied Palma’s lecture entitled ‘Revenge of the Market on the Rentiers’. See below, Palma, June 2009.

How Did Economists Get It So Wrong?
By Paul Krugman
The New York Times: Published: September 2, 2009

It’s hard to believe now, but not long ago economists were congratulating themselves over the success of their field. Those successes — or so they believed — were both theoretical and practical, leading to a golden era for the profession. On the theoretical side, they thought that they had resolved their internal disputes. Thus, in a 2008 paper titled “The State of Macro” (that is, macroeconomics, the study of big-picture issues like recessions), Olivier Blanchard of M.I.T., now the chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, declared that “the state of macro is good.” The battles of yesteryear, he said, were over, and there had been a “broad convergence of vision.” And in the real world, economists believed they had things under control: the “central problem of depression-prevention has been solved,” declared Robert Lucas of the University of Chicago in his 2003 presidential address to the American Economic Association. In 2004, Ben Bernanke, a former Princeton professor who is now the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, celebrated the Great Moderation in economic performance over the previous two decades, which he attributed in part to improved economic policy making.

The Revenge of the Market on the Rentiers
Why neo-liberal reports of the end of history turned out to be premature
José Gabriel Palma - Faculty of Economics - Cambridge University - June 2009

Abstract: Starting from the perspective of heterodox Keynesian-Minskyian-Kindlebergian financial economics, this paper begins by highlighting a number of mechanisms that contributed to the current financial crisis. These include excess liquidity, income polarisation, conflicts between financial and productive capital, lack of intelligent regulation, asymmetric information, principal-agent dilemmas and bounded rationalities. However, the paper then proceeds to argue that perhaps more than ever the ‘macroeconomics’ that led to this crisis only makes analytical sense if examined within the framework the political settlements and distributional outcomes in which it had operated. Taking the perspective of critical social theories the paper concludes that, ultimately, the current financial crisis is the outcome of something much more systemic, namely an attempt to use neo-liberalism (or, in US terms, neo-conservatism) as a new technology of power to help transform capitalism into a rentiers’ delight. And in particular, into system without much ‘compulsion’ on big business; i.e., one that imposes only minimal pressures on big agents to engage in competitive struggles in the real economy (while inflicting exactly the opposite fate on workers and small firms). A key component effectiveness of this new technology of power was its ability to transform the state major facilitator of the ever-increasing rent-seeking practices of oligopolistic capital. architects of this experiment include some capitalist groups (in particular rentiers from the financial sector as well as capitalists from the ‘mature’ and most polluting industries of the preceding techno-economic paradigm), some political groups, as well as intellectual networks with their allies – including most economists and the ‘new’ left. Although rentiers did succeed in their attempt to get rid of practically all fetters on greed, in the end the crisis materialised when ‘markets’ took their inevitable revenge the rentiers by calling their (blatant) bluff.

Academic Year 2011/2012

1.--- Inequality, unemployment, and economic instability are three major blockages for implementing urban and national planning for socially and environmentally just development. Texts below by Nouriel  Roubini,  UNCTAD Trade and Development Report 2010, and Michael A. Lebowitz are excellent critical analyses of those three issues. I highly recommend reading them. (Róbinson Rojas, November 2011.)

From Project Syndicate
The Instability of Inequality
By Nouriel Rubini - 13 October 2011

The result is that free markets don’t generate enough final demand. In the US, for example, slashing labor costs has sharply reduced the share of labor income in GDP. With credit exhausted, the effects on aggregate demand of decades of redistribution of income and wealth – from labor to capital, from wages to profits, from poor to rich, and from households to corporate firms – have become severe, owing to the lower marginal propensity of firms/capital owners/rich households to spend.
The problem is not new. Karl Marx oversold socialism, but he was right in claiming that globalization, unfettered financial capitalism, and redistribution of income and wealth from labor to capital could lead capitalism to self-destruct. As he argued, unregulated capitalism can lead to regular bouts of over-capacity, under-consumption, and the recurrence of destructive financial crises, fueled by credit bubbles and asset-price booms and busts.

UNCTAD - 14 September 2010
Trade and Development Report, 2010 - Chapter III

Macroeconomic aspects of job creation and unemployment

Rising and persistent unemployment in many countries has prompted a variety of explanations based on new and old ideas concerning the rigidities and malfunctioning of labour markets and the role of the welfare state in generating such “inflexibilities”. According to neoclassical employment theory, the only explanation for high or rising unemployment is that real wages are too high or are rising too fast because strong labour unions or excessively high legal minimum wages prevent wages from falling sufficiently to absorb an excess supply of labour. This reasoning is based on a microeconomic concept that is transposed to the macroeconomic level. However, for prices to balance supply and demand, the supply and demand functions have to be independent of each other. This holds for the microeconomic level, but is not valid at the macroeconomic level.

From Monthly Review - May 2004
Ideology and Economic Development
Michael A. Lebowitz
Economic theory is not neutral, and the results when it is applied owe much to the implicit and explicit assumptions embedded in a particular theory. That such assumptions reflect specific ideologies is most obvious in the case of the neoclassical economics that underlies neoliberal economic policies.

Academic Year 2010/2011
Readers on the "Golden Age of Capitalism": 1950s to 1970s

Full employment in the “golden age of capitalism” In response to the experience of high unemployment during the Great Depression in the 1930s and the subsequent long period of instability and war, many major industrialized countries established full employment as a goal in law, and committed themselves to implementing proactive macroeconomic policies. In the post-war era up to the mid-1970s, a period often referred to as the “golden age of capitalism” (Marglin and Schor, 1990; Singh, 2009), unemployment in developed countries was at historically low levels. In Japan as well as several Western European countries that even absorbed a large number of migrant workers from Southern Europe, it was a period of what is considered full employment (table 5.1)...
...During the “golden age of capitalism” unemployment was historically low, even though labour markets were more regulated than they are today...

Review of African Political Economy, 35, 1, 23—42.
New African choices? The politics of Chinese engagement in Africa and the changing architecture of international development
Giles Mohan and Marcus Power

The role of China must be understood in the context of competing and intensified global energy politics, in which the US, India and China are among the key players vying for security of supply. Contrary to popular representation, China’s role in Africa is much more than this however, opening up new choices for African development for the first time since the neo-liberal turn of the 1980s. As such it is important to start by disaggregating ‘China’ and ‘Africa’ since neither represents a coherent and uniform set of motivations and opportunities. This points to the need for, at minimum, a comparative case study approach which highlights the different agendas operating in different African states. It also requires taking a longue durée perspective since China-Africa relations are long standing and recent intervention builds on Cold War solidarities, in polemic at least. It also forces us to consider Chinese involvement in Africa as ambivalent, but contextual. We focus on the political dimensions of this engagement and set out a research agenda that focuses on class and racial dynamics, state restructuring, party politics, civil society responses and aid effectiveness.

White Paper by the Government of People's Republic of China - 2010
China-Africa Economic and Trade Cooperation

"China is the largest developing country in the world, and Africa is home to the largest number of developing countries. The combined population of China and Africa accounts for over one-third of the world's total. Promoting economic development and social progress is the common task China and Africa are facing.
During their years of development, China and Africa give full play to the complementary advantages in each other's resources and economic structures, abiding by the principles of equality, effectiveness, mutual benefit and reciprocity, and mutual development, and keep enhancing economic and trade cooperation to achieve mutual benefit and progress. Practice proves that China-Africa economic and trade cooperation serves the common interests of the two sides, helps Africa to reach the UN Millennium Development Goals, and boosts common prosperity and progress for China and Africa."

From The World Bank - 2008
Building Bridges
China’s Growing Role as Infrastructure Financier for Africa

Vivien Foster, William Butterfield, Chuan Chen and Nataliya Pushak

In recent years, a number of emerging economies have begun to play a growing role in the finance of infrastructure in Sub-Saharan Africa. Their combined resource flows are now comparable in scale to traditional official development assistance (ODA) from OECD countries or to capital from private investors. These non-OECD financiers include China, India, and the Gulf states, with China being by far the largest player.
This new trend reflects a much more positive economic and political environment in Sub- Saharan Africa. Real GDP growth in the region has been sustained at 4 to 6 percent now for a number of years, and has benefited from an improved investment climate. The rise of the Chinese and Indian economies has fueled global demand for petroleum and other commodities. Africa is richly endowed with these and faces a historic opportunity to harness its natural resources and invest the proceeds to broaden its economic base for supporting economic growth and poverty reduction. In this context, south-south cooperation provides a channel through which the benefits of economic development in Asia and the Middle East can be transferred to the African continent, through a parallel deepening of trade and investment relations.

Executive Summary
Read on Economic Inequality, Poverty, Social Exclusion and Corruption in China
Real-World Economics Review Blog
2 February 2010
Wither China?
from  Lewis L. Smith
The biggest “wild card in the oil deck” is no longer some yet-to-be-commercialized technology. Nor is it a country harboring nests of terrorists. Nor it is a producing country like Iraq, Iran, Qatar or Saudi Arabia.  It is China, a net consumer.
In part, this is because of China’s economic, energy, environmental, military and political importance. However, the main reasons are two  —   the uncertainty surrounding the country’s  future and the uncertainty as to future actions of its government in the international sphere.
At $4.2 trillion [2008] , China’s economy is the third largest in the world, after the USA and Japan. By 2020, it will be the second largest.  From 1988 to 2008, its gross domestic product grew at extraordinary average annual rate compounded, almost 10%. It has the second largest army in the world.

From Social Watch
On Ghana and Structural Adjustment Programmes

Ghana’s dependence on foreign aid and international financial institutions over the last three decades or more has led to mass unemployment, huge balance of payments deficits and low manufacturing and agricultural output. The 1992 constitution and other national, regional and international instruments provide the legal basis and specific policies to enhance the welfare and protection of women and children. However, the Government’s minimal investment in education, health, water resources and rural development show the low priority it places on these goals. The likelihood of achieving the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 remains remote.

From the International Monetary Fund
World Economic Outlook Databases

The World Economic Outlook (WEO) database is created during the biannual WEO exercise, which begins in January and June of each year and results in the April and September WEO publication. Selected series from the publication are available in a database format.
See also, the World Economic Outlook Reports.

From United Nations
Links to official statistical organizations active in the UNECE region

United Nations regional commissions:
United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)
United Nations Economic Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)
United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA)

World Development Indicators (WDI) is the primary World Bank database for development data from officially-recognized international sources. Global Development Finance (GDF) provides external debt and financial flows statistics for countries that report public and publicly-guaranteed debt under the World Bank's Debtor Reporting System (DRS).    

From UNRISD - 2010
Combating Poverty and Inequality
Structural Change, Social Policy and Politics

Democracy needs not just free and fair elections, but also organized citizens, special types of state-citizen relations and social pacts to deliver on distribution
Towards Employment-Centred Structural Change
Income Inequality and Structural Change
Tackling Ethnic and Regional Inequalities
Gender Inequalities at Home and in the Market
Towards Universal Social Protection
Universal Provision of Social Services
Care and Well-Being in a Development Context
Financing Social Policy
Business, Power and Poverty Reduction     - recommended (R.R.)
Building State Capacity for Poverty Reduction
Democracy and the Politics of Poverty Reduction
Coordinating Social, Economic and Political Forces to Deliver for the Poor

From the UK Office for National Statistics
Social Trends
Social Trend 40 - 6 July 2010 - full text

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is the executive office of the UK Statistics Authority, a non-ministerial department which reports directly to Parliament. ONS is the UK government’s single largest statistical producer. It compiles information about the UK’s society and economy, and provides the evidence-base for policy and decision-making, the allocation of resources, and public accountability. The Director General of ONS reports directly to the National Statistician who is the Authority’s Chief Executive and the Head of the Government Statistical Service.

Trade and Development Report 2010
Employment, Globalisation and Development
See Chapter V:  "Revising the Policy Framework for Sustained Growth, Employment Creation and Poverty Reduction"

World Economic Situation and Prospects 2010
The world economy is on the mend. After a sharp, broad and synchronized global downturn in late 2008 and early 2009, an increasing number of countries have registered positive quarterly growth of gross domestic product (GDP), along with a notable recovery in international trade and global industrial production. World equity markets have also rebounded and risk premiums on borrowing have fallen… but recovery is fragile
World Economic Situation and Prospects 2009
It was never meant to happen again, but the world economy is now mired in the most severe financial crisis since the Great Depression. In little over a year, the mid-2007 subprime mortgage debacle in the United States of America has developed into a global financial crisis and started to move the global economy into a recession. Aggressive monetary policy action in the United States and massive liquidity injections by the central banks of the major developed countries were unable to avert this crisis. Several major financial institutions in the United States and Europe have failed, and stock market and commodity prices have collapsed and become highly volatile. Interbank lending in most developed countries has come to a virtual standstill, and the spread between the interest rate on interbank loans and treasury bills has surged to the highest level in decades. Retail businesses and industrial firms, both large and small, are finding it increasingly difficult to obtain credit as banks have become reluctant to lend, even to long-time customers. In October 2008, the financial crisis escalated further with sharp falls on stock markets in both developed and emerging economies. Many countries experienced their worst ever weekly sell off in equity markets
UN: World Economic and Social Situation
Global Economic Prospects 2010:  Crisis,Finance, and Growth
Report: The Persistent Problem--Inequality, Difference, and the Challenge of Development
Released on July 10, 2008

Global levels of inequality today are at extremely high levels even as conditions for alleviating deprivation are more favorable than ever before.  Inequities in the international system and within developing countries threaten to halt progress toward greater democratization and economic development for the poorest countries in the world.
The report by the Task Force on Difference, Inequality, and Development of the American Political Science Association, entitled The Persistent Problem: Inequality, Difference, and the Challenge of Development, highlights how these problems threaten efforts to alleviate deprivation such as the Millennium Development Goals.  It shows that in an increasingly interdependent world, international institutions should be made more accountable to poor countries if they are to maintain their legitimacy and effectiveness.

For democracy and capitalism to fulfill their promise of ending deprivation in developing countries, they must be based on institutions that reflect their distinctive histories and cultures. Deepening democratic processes in developing countries is essential for establishing political and economic institutions to equitably reflect local experiences. Effective change will be interactive, not imposed.

World Bank Working Paper - May 2008
Global Poverty and Inequality: A Review of the Evidence
Francisco H.G. Ferreira and Martin Ravallion

Drawing on a compilation of data from household surveys representing 130 countries, many over a period of 25 years, this paper reviews the evidence on levels and recent trends in global poverty and income inequality. It documents the negative correlations between both poverty and inequality indices, on the one hand, and mean income per capita on the other.
It points to the dominant role of Asia in accounting for the bulk of the world’s poverty reduction since 1981. The evolution of global inequality in the last decades is also described, with special emphasis on the different trends of inequality within and between countries. The statistical relationships between growth, inequality and poverty are discussed, as is the correlation between inequality and the growth elasticity of poverty reduction. Some of the recent literature on the drivers of distributional change in developing countries is also reviewed

From International Labour Organization

Labour Shares - Technical Brief No. 01, 2007

In most regions of the world, the share of national income that goes to labour has been declining over the past two or three decades.
This coincides with the advent of the latest wave of globalization, and several studies provide evidence that globalization has contributed to the decline in labour shares.
Several aspects of globalization, and in particular financial openness and financial crises, have a detrimental impact on labour incomes.
The downward trend indicates that either wages or employment creation in the formal sector have not kept pace with economic growth during globalization, or that a combination of both occurred.
A falling labour share is thus the mirror-image of slow wage growth and low employment elasticities. It is consistent with the finding that economic growth does not create jobs at the rate it used to, and that income gains for workers have often not kept pace with growth.
Moreover, a shift of incomes away from labour and towards capital has contributed to rising inequality.
To make globalization fair, it is important to reverse the shift of factor shares and to increase the share of national incomes that accrues to labour.

Measuring Labor's Share - By Alan B. Krueger, 1999
Getting Income Shares Right - By Douglas Gollin, 2002
Re-measuring Labor's Share - By Andrew T. Young and Hernando Zuleta, 2008
Getting income shares right: a panel data investigation for OECD countries - By Aamer S. Abu-Qarn and Suleiman Abu-Bader, 2007

Globalization Myths: some historical reflections on integration, industrialization and growth in the world economy
Paul Bairoch and Richard Kozul-Wright - No. 113 - March 1996
This paper was prepared for the WIDER Conference on Transnational Corporations and the Global Economy, Kings College, Cambridge (UK), September 1995.

It has become popular to draw a parallel between current globalization trends and the half century of international economic integration before the First World War. Indeed, some writers suggest that current trends mark a return to this earlier period, from which they draw strong conclusions about growth prospects and convergence associated with globalization. This paper assesses this historical parallel. It accepts that many features of today's international economy are not unique. However, it is sceptical of efforts to make a direct parallel with the earlier period. In particular, the paper shows that the period before 1913 was not one of trade liberalization, nor one of reduced expectations about the role of the State, and suggests that rapid industrial growth in some economies cannot be explained by globalization pressures. More generally, a description of this earlier period of globalization as one of rapid growth and convergence is questioned, and instead associated with uneven economic development, during which a very small group of countries were able to reinforce their domestic growth efforts through links to the international economy, while for others these same links did little to alter long-term growth prospects, and in some cases even hindered them.

Statistical Indicators for Asia and the Pacific
Data Center
Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific

Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific 2009
World Bank:
Africa Development Indicators(ADI) (various years)
Global Employment Trends and Related Reports
  1. Economic and Labour Market Analysis Department (EMP/ELM)
    1. Employment Trends (EMP/TRENDS)
    2. Policy Analysis and Research (EMP/ANALYSIS)
  2. Employment Policy Department (EMP/POLICY)
    1. Country Employment Policy (EMP/CEPOL)
    2. Employment-Intensive Investment Programme (EIIP)
  3. Job Creation and Enterprise Development Department (EMP/ENTERPRISE)
    1. Boosting Employment through Small Enterprise Development (EMP/SEED)
    2. Cooperatives (EMP/COOP)
    3. Multinational Enterprises (EMP/MULTI)
  4. Skills and Employability Department (EMP/SKILLS)
  5. ILO Programme on Crisis Response and Reconstruction (ILO/CRISIS)
  6. Social Finance

International Trade Statistics (ITS) (various years)

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
The crisis of capitalism and the periphery"
by Raul Prebisch, the first Secretary-General of UNCTAD (PREBISCH 1st Lecture)
01/07/82, 9 Pages, 514 Kb
Also it is all too obvious that part of the big increase in productivity in the post-war period which stimulated these various forms of consumption was to some extent specious. It was an increase in productivity achieved through irresponsible exploitation of non-renewable natural resources; oil is an obvious example. In order to remedy this situation, which is crucial for mankind, a greater investment of capital is needed per unit of energy and therefore per unit of output. We must also consider the capital which will be required to counteract the degradation of the environment that results from the ambivalent effects of production technology. Thus there is a set of situations, created by the internal logic of the system, which have brought about the crisis

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Peace and Development
by Shrimati Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India ( PREBISCH 2nd Lecture)
01/06/83, 9 Pages, 320 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
The Emerging Prospects for Development and the World Economy
by Dr. Saburo Okita (PREBISCH 3rd Lecture)
01/07/87, 13 Pages, 537 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Restructuring in the USSR and International Economic Relation
by Abel G. Aganbegyan, one of the Principal Economic Advisers of the Government of USSR (PREBISCH 4th Lecture)
01/07/89, 18 Pages, 760 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Economic Development: towards a new partnership
by Bernardo T.G. Chidzero, Enrique Iglesias, and Michel Rocard (PREBISCH 5th Lecture)
01/02/92, 35 Pages, 1317 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Globalization, economic restructuring and development
by Professor John H. Dunning, Professor of International Business State University of New Jersey, Rutgers, United States (PREBISCH 6th Lecture)
01/04/94, 44 Pages, 1760 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
The Global Age: from a sceptical South to a fearful North
by Professor Jagdish Bhagwati and Arthur Lehman, Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science, Columbia University (PREBISCH 7th Lecture)
01/04/96, 37 Pages, 1620 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Globalization, Social Conflict and Economic Growth
by Dany Rodrik, Rafiq Hariri Professor of International Political Economy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (PREBISCH 8th Lecture)
24/10/97, 21 Pages, 433 Kb
I believe the development community has internalized the wrong lessons from the experience of countries that adopted the ISI strategy in Latin America and elsewhere. The correct interpretation, I think, goes something like this.

First, ISI worked rather well for a period of about two decades. It brought unprecedented economic growth to scores of countries in Latin America, the Middle East, and North Africa, and even to some in sub-Saharan Africa.

Second, when the economies of these same countries began to fail apart in the second half of the 1970s, the reasons had very little to do with ISI policies per se or the extent of government interventions. Countries that weathered the storm were those in which governments undertook the appropriate macroeconomic adjustments (in the areas of fiscal, monetary and exchange-rate policy) rapidly and decisively.

Third, and more fundamentally, success in adopting these macroeconomic adjustments was linked to deeper social determinants. It was the ability to manage the domestic social conflicts triggered by the turbulance of the world economy during the 1970s that made the difference between continued growth and economic collapse. Countries with deeper social divisions and weaker institutions of conflict management experienced greater economic deterioration in response to the external shocks of the 1970s.

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Towards a New Paradigm for Development
by Dr. Joseph E. Stiglitz, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist, The World Bank, by Dr. Joseph E. Stiglitz, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist, The World Bank (PREBISCH 9th Lecture)
19/10/98, 34 Pages, 166 Kb
In today’s lecture, I want to go beyond these by now well-documented failures of the Washington consensus to begin providing the foundations of an alternative paradigm, especially one relevant to the least developing countries. It is based on a broad conception of development, with a noncomitantly broader vision of development strategies and a quite different perspective on the role of international assistance and the ways in which it should be delivered. The remainder of this lecture is organized around five parts.
First, I shall describe this broader vision.
Second, I shall explain why not only the Washington consensus but also earlier development paradigms failed: they viewed development too narrowly. I shall outline briefly some of the key factors B including recent events in East Asia and the Russian Federation B that have helped us realize the inadequacies of the old approaches.
Third, I shall outline what I refer to as the key principles of a development strategy based on this broader vision of development.
Fourth, I shall outline the major components of these new development strategies. And fifth, I shall conclude with some general observations, focusing on the importance of trade and the work of UNCTAD in furthering development based on this new paradigm.

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Markets, Politics and Globalization: can the global economy be civilized?
by Gerald Karl Helleiner, Centre for International Studies University of Toronto, Canada (PREBISCH 10th Lecture)
11/12/00, 25 Pages, 118 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Tribute to Raśl Prebisch
by Fayza Aboulnaga, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Egypt; Gamani Corea, former Secretary-General of UNCTAD; Javad Zarif, Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs, Iran; member of the Group of Eminent Persons for the UN Year of Dialogue among Civilizations (PREBISCH 11th Lecture)
01/07/01, 23 Pages, 955 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
UNCTAD past and present: our next forty years
by Rubens Ricupero Secretary-General of UNCTAD (PREBISCH 12th Lecture)
14/09/04, 14 pages, 56 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
South and East Asia: leading the world economy
by Professor Lawrence R. Klein, Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences (PREBISCH 13th Lecture)
02/11/05, 8 Pages, 64 Kb

From the Raśl Prebisch Lectures (UNCTAD)
Globalization in the era of Environmental Crisis
by Mr. Jeffrey Sachs, Director, Earth Institute (PREBISCH 14th Lecture)
15/09/09, 38 Pages, 148 Kb
That is my central message: we face a dire and growing crisis. We are in the age where sustainable development is truly the fundamental challenge. I tell my students and my children that theirs will be the generation where sustainable development is not a back page issue. It will be the front and centre challenge of their generation, even if we, the older folks, have left them with a world that is unstable and that is unprepared for these challenges. They will have to solve these challenges, and we leave them a world of peril. We have to do better than what we’re doing right now.

International Trade Statistics 2009 - World Trade Organization
Structural Change in the World Economy: Main Features and Trends - 2009
Olga Memedovic - Research and Statistics Branch Programme Coordination and Field Operations Division UNIDO - and Lelio Iapadre - Associate Professor of International Economics University of L’Aquila Johns Hopkins University — SAIS Bologna Center
UNU Institute for Comparative Regional Integration Studies

This working paper presents a quantitative analysis of sectoral trends in the global economy. After surveying the relevant theoretical and empirical literature on structural change, we discuss the historical evolution of agriculture, industry and services in terms of their share of world value added. This analysis refers to six continental regions and covers a period of 40 years. Constant-market-shares (CMS) analysis is then used to investigate changes in the contribution of regional aggregates to world production. This is followed by an analysis of the evolution of the manufacturing industry and the intensity of structural change for a sample of 30 countries and 18 sub-sectors for which data are available in the UNIDO INDSTAT 2, 2009 database. Three main findings resulted from the analysis. First, the long-term rise in the share of services in global value added has been slowing down in the last decade. Second, the upward trend in the global value added share of North America and Asia seems to be partly reverted in favour of other regions. Third, after a setback during the 1980s, structural transformation in the manufacturing sector has been accelerating in the last two decades. The purpose of this paper is to provide a starting point for more specific studies at sector, national and regional level.

New Public Management. A market-friendly type of public administration? A critique Seminar topic.-Economic, social and political development require a new type of administration and planning”. Discuss

Equity and Development. The struggle for reducing poverty. PRSPs and SWAPs.
Give an analytical overview of the main causes for poverty in developing societies

Background readings on effects of the economic recession 2008-2009:

A. Fosu and W. Naudé, 2009, The Global Economic Crisis. Towards Syndrome-Free Recovery for Africa , UNU-WIDER, 2009, available at

African Center for Gender and Social Development, 2009, African Perspectives of the global economic and financial crisis, including the impact on health, available at

Impact of the crisis on African economies - sustaining growth and poverty reduction, Committee of African Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, 2009, available at

Prof. Chukwuma C. Soludo, CFR, Governor Central Bank of Nigeria , 2009, Global financial and economic crisis: how vulnerable is Nigeria?, CBN, 2009, available at"

Adamu, A., 2008,The effects of global financial crisis on Nigerian economy, available at

IDB, 2009, Policy Trade-offs for Unprecedented Times: Confronting the Global Crisis in Latin America and the Caribbean , IDB, 2009, available at

UN, 2009, Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development, UN, 2009, available at

IMF, 2009, Contractionary Forces Receding But Weak Recovery Ahead, available at

CGAP, 2009, Focus Note: The Global Financial Crisis and Its Impact on Microfinance, available at

UNCTAD, 2009, At inaugural public symposium. "Voiceless" have strong words for global financial crisis. Representatives of civil society, private sector tell UNCTAD and officials of other agencies that global turmoil is taking a painful toll, available at

Jenkins, R. (1992), “Theoretical Perspectives”, in Hewitt, T., Johnson, H. and Wield, D., Industrialization and Development ( Oxford University Press), Chapter 5, pp. 128 – 166.



Share the World Resources

Share The World's Resources (STWR) is a think-tank that advocates for natural resources such as oil and water to be sustainably managed in the interests of the global public, and for essential goods and services (including staple food, adequate shelter and primary healthcare) to be made universally accessible.
As a non-governmental organisation with consultative status at the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC), STWR works to influence policy thr ough research and publications outlining how to rapidly secure basic human needs through greater international cooperation and economic sharing

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