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Why Growth Rates Differ : The Political Economy of Social Capability in 21 Developing Countries (The Twentieth Anniversary Symposium, July 1-3, 1991. Session III)

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  • 저자 Deepak Lal
  • 발행일 1991/07/01
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요약 The organizers of this symposium have asked participants to
consider the role of what they habe termed social capability as a
determinant of the differing growth performance of developing
countries over the last three decades. This term, as I understand
it, is meant to cover all those causes of growth which go
beyond the proximate ones - the level of investment and its
efficiency- in explaining difference in growth rates. These
include: entrepreneurship, learning by doing, organizational and
institutional aspects related to transactions and information costs,
as well a the general economic and political framework which
determine the relative costs of ding business in different
countries, as well as their efficiency of investment and levels of
thrift.

A recently completed multi country comparative study
co-directed by the author and Hla Mying for the World Bank,
was explicitly designed to provide some answers to a similar set
of question. It was based on in-depth historical studies of 21
developing countries, which explored the role of a) initial
conditions- resource endowment and economic structures; b)
national political institutions and economic organization and c)
economic policies (including alternative policies which might have
been undertaken). In this paper some of the results emerging
from the synthesis volume(Lal-Myint(1991)) which provides the
comparative analysis of the country studies, are used to answer
some of the questions concerning social capability- what it is,
and how it can be fostered.

The paper is in 3 parts. In the first we examine the
evidence on the proximate causes of growth in our sample of 21
developing countries. We also briefly look at various endogenous
growth models, recently developed under the rubric of the "new"
growth theory, to see of they can provide the requisite
explanations, and find them lacking. In the second part we
provide a grief outline of a three by two by five fold
classification of our countries initial resource endowments,
organizational structures, and polities, which we found useful in
making our comparative historical judgments on the deeper
determinants of growth. The third part outlines the conclusions
on the policy framework which we found best serves to foster
social capability.

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