- Hardcover: 240 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press (11 October 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0199652988
- ISBN-13: 978-0199652983
- Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 2 x 16 cm
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,00,815 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Catch Up: Developing Countries in the World Economy Hardcover – 11 Oct 2013
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Catch Up is an important contribution to world economic history and to development studies. It is provocative and illuminating at the same time, and should become essential reading for those interested in understanding the process of economic development in historical terms. (Kunal Sen, Pacific Affairs)
This book is a commendable addition, combing historical and economic analysis, to the current debate on the fast geopolitical changes and the development of a multipolar world. It emphasizes convincingly the need for human development and social change in the process of catch up and challenges the reader thereto. (Rolph van der Hoeven, Journal of Human Development and Capabilities)
Deepak Nayyar is that rare breed of economist who combines a sharp analytical mind with an appreciation of numbers and a clear understanding of how real economies function in a particular institutional and macroeconomic context. These qualities are on full display in this book, which examines some of the big economic trends that have shaped the world economy over the past two centuries. It is a fast and at times breathtaking ride across a broad expanse of economic history, which is sure to engage and stimulate economists, historians and geographers alike. (Richard Kozul-Wright, South Asia Economic Journal)
The book attempts to be simultaneously nation-centric, group of nations-centric and people-centric. It is packed with theory, policy and data, based on which several issues are analysed with broad sweep and outstanding depth. It is not only worth reading but worth possessing as a reference document to guide us in asking the right questions and in providing clues to possible answers, in the field of development economics and public policy (Dr. Y.V. Reddy, former Governor , Reserve Bank of India, Business Standard)
This book will be of interest to anyone interested in the evolution of the world economy. The focus on the role of developing countries in this process provides a new perspective on this important topic. Perhaps the most useful aspect of this book is that it integrates a long history of complex and multifaceted growth experiences across the developing world into a coherent and concise format, making it accessible to a wide audience. Scholars from across the social sciences, policy-makers, students and general readers will all find this book interesting and insightful. (Marianne Ward-Peradoza, EH.Net)
The book is truly a guide to policymakers in developing countries. Across the pages, he [Nayyar] has analysed many issues and given out many observations on the ongoing Development Debate. (K.Subramanian, The Hindu)
For far too long, the world economic history has been told almost exclusively from the point of view of the rich countries. Nayyars book tells it from the other side, tracing the fall and then the rise of Asia, particularly China and India, and other developing countries over centuries. It is an essential reading for anyone who wants to get a balanced understanding of the history of the world economy. The books narrative is literary and engaging, accessible to everyone, but its content is based on rigorous analyses. Its attention to detail is meticulous. Yet, it offers a breath-taking historical sweep. A masterpiece. (Ha-Joon Chang, University of Cambridge, author of Kicking Away the Ladder and 23 Things They Dont Tell You About Capitalism)
This book is a brilliant overview of the role of the developing countries in the world economy as it has evolved over the centuries, focusing first on the Great Divergence and Great Specialization from about 1820 to 1950, and then in much greater detail on the period from 1950 to the present. Nayyar skillfully blends a fascinating narrative of the "Catch Up" process with sharp analytical interpretation and incisive policy critiques to provide a unique assessment of this momentous process in global history and its possible future trajectory. It will be a major reference for both general readers interested in development and globalization as well as specialists in international trade, economic development and economic history, who will all appreciate the wider context into which this book will place their individual research. (Ronald Findlay, Professor of Economics, Columbia University, New York)
Deepak Nayyars ambitious and exciting book spans global economic developments over the last two centuries. He shows how the Great Divergence between North and South, resulting from the nineteenth century industrial revolution, was gradually reversed from 1950 as developing country growth rates accelerated. Although the catch-up is uneven across countries and between people, this perceptive and forward looking book offers the alluring prospect of a multi-polar world in the twenty-first century, with power and economic wealth far more evenly distributed across the globe. (Frances Stewart, Emeritus Professor of Development Economics, University of Oxford)
Almost unnoticed, we are in the midst of a Great Transformation?from a world in which a disproportionate part of global income accrued to Europe, the US, and a few other countries dotted around the world, to one in which billions of those in the rest are catching up: to a large extent, a restoration of the world as it was in 1820, when Asia had more than 50 per cent of the worlds GDP, before the industrial revolution and colonialism created the imbalanced world that we have come to take for granted. Nayyar analyzes lucidly the ongoing change and discusses forcefully the prospects for this great transformation, how it will be brought about, and what it will imply for the world order which will emerge. (Joseph Stiglitz, University Professor, Columbia University, New York, and Nobel Laureate in Economics)
About the Author
Deepak Nayyar is Emeritus Professor of Economics at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and former Distinguished University Professor of Economics at the New School for Social Research, New York. He has taught at the University of Oxford, the University of Sussex, and the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta. He was Vice Chancellor of the University of Delhi. He also served as Chief Economic Adviser to the Government of India and Secretary in the Ministry of Finance. He was educated at St. Stephen's College and the Delhi School of Economics. He is an Honorary Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford. Professor Nayyar served as Chairman of the Board of WIDER, Helsinki, and on the Board of Directors of the Social Science Research Council in the United States. He is Vice Chairman of the South Centre, Geneva. His research interests are primarily in the areas of international economics, macroeconomics and development economics.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
* In the early through mid 1800s the less developed nations accounted for the bulk of the world's estimated GDP. India and China alone accounted for roughly half. This is not a surprise as before the industrial revolution GDP was primarily agricultural and based on craftsman like industries. These, in turn, were highly correlated with population (a fact not mentioned in the book).
* During the above period per capita GDPs worldwide, between the less developed and more developed nations were, more or less, even.
* After the mid-1800s the percentage of world GDP started to shift dramatically from the less developed to more developed nations. This trend hit a peak in approximately 1950 then started to reverse. In the little theory that is presented in the book the author, Dr. Nayyar, attributes this trend to the initial advantages the industrialized nations had in terms of economic efficiency in combination with the fact that many of the less developed nations, especially China and India, were forced to open their markets up to the more leading industrialized nations. Dr. Nayyar also attributes part of the explanation to advances in transport technology and communications technology that facilitated this trade. Dr. Nayyar points out, in support of this view, the fact that Latin America, with the high barriers to trade enacted after its nation states were established, did not suffer the dramatic relative decreases in GDP India and China did. Dr. Nayyar, unfortunately, does not examine how important these different factors were relative to each other in causing the relative decline in aggregate GDP until 1950.
* Per capita GDPs also followed a similar trend.
* After 1950, the less developed nation's percentage of GDP, again in particular India and China, started to increase relative to the developed nations. This relationship was exponential in nature. It started off slowly in in the 1950s increased in the 1960s, started a take-off in the 1980s and then finally exploded in the 1990s and reached the stratosphere, in relative terms, in the 2000s. Unfortunately little theory or other explanation is offered behind this. Could this have been due to the end of colonialism? The drop in tariffs resulting from WTO (and other) trade agreements? What was the importance of foreign investment, both direct and indirect in this relationship? What about the decreasing cost of transportation? What about technologies that enabled the outsourcing of manufacturing from the developed to less developed nations (i.e., information technology)? No explanation whatsoever is provided.
* Inequalities are examined between the less and more developed nations, as a whole. As a whole they decreased but only because of the growth of some outliers such as China and India. If we exclude the best performing LDCs this inequality has barely budged.
* Inequality within the less developed nations has increased dramatically, in much the same way that increased in the more developed during their periods of industrialization from the mid-1850s to the First World War.
The author also provides many other interesting empirical observations that involve too many variables to discuss in this review. Dr. Nayyar is also careful in stressing that quite a bit of the data these observations were based on leave much to be desired thus should be taken with a bit of salt. However, it is still a good starting point. Dr. Nayyar is also careful to point out that the less developed nations are quite heterogeneous. This applies to even the top 14 or so of the most successful. Some were relatively closed (i.e., India) while others very free trade (i.e., Hong Kong, Singapore) while others were neo-mercantilist (i.e., Japan and South Korea). Dr. Nayyar states that they all had, in common, the fact that they had a number of institutions set up that enabled them to develop. However, Dr. Nayyar provides very little discussion and analysis regarding this. This, in this reviewer's opinion, is the most significant weakness of the book.
In conclusion, the book provides many empirical observations that are quite fascinating even though the author does not make a serious attempt to explain them in terms of theory. The empirical data alone, though, makes this book worth reading.