Alternative Economic Policies Would Aid Development
Current globalization policies not necessary or desirable, argue economists
For Immediate Release: August 3, 2004
Contact: Debi Kar, 202-387-5080
Developing countries would be helped by a combination of strategic trade policy,
government spending, and financial regulation that are currently discouraged by
Washington, argue Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) Senior
Research Associate Ha-Joon Chang and University of Denver Professor Ilene
Grabel in their new book,
Reclaiming Development: An Economic Policy Handbook for Activists and Policymakers (Zed Books: 2004). Their book demonstrates that
alternative economic policies would bring about rapid, sustainable and equitable
growth, including policies used by the US and other developed countries during
their own periods of development.
The book details the prevailing ‘neoliberal’ explanation for how
economies develop and the economic policies it imposes worldwide. By analyzing
the actual historical experiences of the leading Western and East Asian
economies during their development, the authors question the validity of the
neoliberal development model.
Grabel and Chang, who is also International Forum for Development Co-Chair,
then set out concrete, practical alternatives across the key economic areas:
trade and industrial policy; privatization; intellectual property rights;
external borrowing, portfolio and foreign direct investment; domestic financial
regulation; and management of exchange rates, central banking and monetary
policy; and government revenue and expenditure. The authors bring together a
combination of already existing alternatives and some innovative measures of
What critics are saying about Reclaiming Development:
'This unusually well-written, direct and succinct book describes neo-liberal
positions fairly; offers theoretically rigorous and empirically accurate
critiques; and describes feasible, practical alternative policies that take
realistic account of political, economic and financial constraints. Discussion
of financial, monetary, fiscal, trade and industry policy and intellectual
property rights is especially strong and constructive and makes important
innovative contributions…' - John Langmore, Representative of the ILO to the
'This book is not only a superb antidote to the numbing myths of
neoliberalism but also a cogent and stimulating presentation of the many
possibilities for alternatives to neo-liberal economic policy that both theory
and history provide policy-makers and students of development.' - Thandika
Mkandawire, Director, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD).
'The dominant neo-liberal economic doctrine asserts that there is no
alternative to its policy prescriptions which provide the foundations for
success in an age of globalization. This book questions and refutes the belief
system implicit in the assertion. … Yet, it is solidly grounded in economic
theory and empirical evidence, both historical and contemporary.' - Deepak
Nayyar, Vice Chancellor, University of Delhi.
The book is available from Zed Books
or at Amazon.com.
These important global issues will be discussed further at the
International Forum for Development first annual forum October 18-19 in New York
City. See www.ifdnet.org.