IDS Alumnus and Leontief Prize winner Michael Lipton gives Sussex Development Lecture
IDS alumnus and Leontief Prize winner Michael Lipton recently gave a Sussex Development Lecture entitled "The State and the big push towards modern industry: 'New' economics, defunct economists, and farmers".
- pro-urban bias in development
- decision making by smallholder farmers and its importance in development
- poverty measurement and policies, and holes in the poverty consensus (such as social exclusion)
- the emergence of institutions such as land reform
- the disconnects between poverty and nutrition
- mechanisms for governing competition for water amongst its multiple uses
- population dividends
Michael is one of those rare academics who is widely respected in both the worlds of academia and policy and it is for his cumulative body of work at the intersection of policy, practice and academia that he was recently awarded the Leontief Prize by Tufts University.
His Sussex Development Lecture built on and critiqued the interesting work of Justin Lin, Chief Economist at the World Bank. Lin argues that we need a New Structuralism to understand growth. Old Structuralism emphasised state activity to move economies from agriculture to industry and services, essentially ignoring comparative advantage (how one evolves and uses the natural endowments of a country). New Structuralism sees the state more as a facilitator than an orchestrator when it comes to moving from agriculture to other types of production, but always guided by comparative advantage.
In the lecture Michael concluded that Lin's work is a good start, but it is only a start. For example he notes that Lin's paper is very much couched around growth, not poverty reduction. Michael argues that the New Structuralist approaches make it imperative that the state is more active in guiding this comparative advantage-led growth towards poverty and inequality reduction. Michael also makes the argument that the New Structuralist perspective supports and can be driven by science and smallholder-agriculture led growth.
As usual, Michael made me think hard about something that it would be much easier not to have to think about at all. He has been doing that for most of us for a long time and I am very thankful to him for that.
Article orginally published on Development Horizons by Lawrence Haddad, Director, Institute of Development Studies
Related Content - News & Blogs
BLOG: A year after Westgate: what has Kenya learned?
By Jeremy Lind and Patrick Mutahi
BLOG: Good news on Inequality in Latin America – Highlights from the UNU-WIDER Inequality Conference 5-6 September, Helsinki
Something ought to be done on inequality.....I have just got back from a major UNU-WIDER conference on Inequality (5-6 September). Inequality is big news. Something ought to be done. It's not just me... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
Related Content - Events
The effects of religious fundamentalism in developing countries
22 May 2014 17:00 to 18:30
Fulton A, University of Sussex
The Global Development Crisis and the Possibilities of Labour-Centred Development
13 March 2014 17:00 to 18:30
Room 221, Institute of Development Studies
Popular Representations of Development: Insights from Novels, Films, Television and Social Media
21 January 2014 17:00 to 18:30
IDS Convening Space