2 November 2017
Sabyasachi Kar is author of the insightful book The Political Economy of India’s Growth Episodes with Kunal Sen. On the release of the World Bank’s Doing Business Rankings, Sabyasachi outlines how the framework developed in their book provides a game-changing way of identifying the conditions for better business in India.
The World Bank’s Doing Business (DB) rankings for 2018 have just come out and India has made a very significant jump, improving its rank from 130th in 2017 to 100th. These rankings are based on the country’s performance in several areas, like starting a business, getting construction permits, getting electricity, contract enforcement, etc.— fields where India has traditionally done very poorly, resulting in its global rankings hovering around the 130s during the last decade. This had prompted the current government to initiate a slew of business-friendly institutional reforms, including “Make In India”, simplification of tax procedures, bankruptcy laws and so on. All of these seem to have led to the big jump in India’s ranking. Continue Reading →
5th October 2017
The underlying political settlement within countries too often provides political elites with insufficient incentives to enact the institutional reforms needed for further growth and structural transformation
The original developmental states of East Asia had one unifying economic characteristic: they witnessed almost uninterrupted rapid economic growth for well over four decades. This is very different from what we have observed for other developing countries, where economic growth has been boom and bust, defined by a rapid growth acceleration followed by a deceleration that at times was quite prolonged. With the exception of China, no other country has observed rapid sustained growth in the past few decades.
Why have we seen so few examples of countries with developmental state properties when it comes to economic growth? Is it due to the lack of political and economic space for nation-states in low and middle income countries to chart their own independent path to industrialisation and structural transformation in the current liberal economic order, where the forces of globalisation are too strong to be kept at bay? Or are there other explanations for the lack of examples of successful developmental states in the Global South today? Continue Reading →
2nd October 2017
Last month, Marion Ouma of the University of South Africa presented her excellent paper to the DSA Conference. Drawing from the nexus of policy transfer and Foucauldian perspective on power, the paper investigates the extent to which power relations determined the uptake of social protection policy and programmes in Kenya.
29th September 2017
ESID expert and Associate Professor at the Barcelona Institut Estudis Internacionals Matthias vom Hau has been awarded the prestigious editorial best paper award from the Comparative Political Studies Journal. The award was for Ethnicity in Time: Politics, History and the Relationship between Ethnic Diversity and Public Good Provision. The paper pushes for a new research agenda, challenging one of the most powerful theories in political economy – the supposedly negative relationship between ethnic diversity and public goods provision. The prize is given annually by the CPS editorial board for the best paper published within the journal in the previous year.
Matthias said “The news about the award caught Prerna Singh, my co-author, and I completely by surprise. ESID had a strong influence on the award of this prize. We received extremely insightful and stimulating feedback from the ESID research community when we presented initial versions of the piece at various workshops. ESID support was also crucial in enabling me to complete the article and the special issue it was part of.”