Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Frontiers of Growth

Have Russia and China proved that authoritarianism and capitalism can go hand-in-hand? Can legality be imported? Are some countries fated to race ahead while others lag? Does culture shape economics? Is unrestricted foreign investment a help or a hindrance to countries seeking to escape from poverty?

Understanding what makes economies grow is one of the most vexing tasks facing researchers and policymakers. Around the world, growth is universally regarded as the cure-all for human misery. Improved growth rates are also critical to the future of the developed countries, for the cost of backwardness is high – and rises with every new technological advance.

How can faster economic growth be achieved, and what is a fair price to pay for it? Growth is now viewed as creating problems of its own – congestion, pollution, and exploitation, among others– and rich and poor countries alike reckon that these factors, too, must be taken into account.

Project Syndicate’s commentaries on The Frontiers of Growth deliver to readers the best critical thinking on the impact of development strategies on countries everywhere – whatever their level of economic attainment. Contributors include top economists, businessmen, and policymakers, such as former US Treasury Secretary and current chief economic adviser to President Barack Obama Larry Summers, financier George Soros, European Central Bank board member Jürgen Stark, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, former UN Undersecretary General Jose Antonio Ocampo, and former Polish central bank governor Leszek Balcerowicz.

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