Since the end of World War II, economists have tried to figure out how poor countries in the tropics could attain standards of living approaching those of countries in Europe and North America. A myriad of remedies has not delivered the solutions promised. The problem is not the failure of economics, William Easterly argues, but the failure to apply economic principle to practical policy work. In this book, Easterly shows how these solutions all violate the basic principles of economics, that people-private individuals and businesses, government officials, even aid donors – respond to incentives. Written in an accessible, at times irreverent, style, Easterly’s book combines modern growth theory with anecdotes from his fieldwork for the World Bank.
The Elusive Quest for Growth