Understanding Poverty

Paperback | March 31, 2006

EditorAbhijit Vinayak Banerjee, Roland Benabou, Dilip Mookherjee

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Understanding poverty and what to do about it, is perhaps the central concern of all of economics. Yet the lay public almost never gets to hear what leading professional economists have to say about it. This volume brings together twenty-eight essays by some of the world leaders in the field,who were invited to tell the lay reader about the most important things they have learnt from their research that relate to poverty. The essays cover a wide array of topics: the first essay is about how poverty gets measured. The next section is about the causes of poverty and its persistence, andthe ideas range from the impact of colonialism and globalization to the problems of "excessive" population growth, corruption and ethnic conflict. The next section is about policy: how should we fight poverty? The essays discuss how to get drug companies to produce more vaccines for the diseases ofthe poor, what we should and should not expect from micro-credit, what we should do about child labor, how to design welfare policies that work better and a host of other topics. The final section is about where the puzzles lie: what are the most important anomalies, the big gaps in the wayeconomists think about poverty? The essays talk about the puzzling reluctance of Kenyan farmers to fertilizers, the enduring power of social relationships in economic transactions in developing countries and the need to understand where aspirations come from, and much else. Every essay is writtenwith the aim of presenting the latest and the most sophisticated in economics without any recourse to jargon or technical language.

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Understanding poverty and what to do about it, is perhaps the central concern of all of economics. Yet the lay public almost never gets to hear what leading professional economists have to say about it. This volume brings together twenty-eight essays by some of the world leaders in the field,who were invited to tell the lay reader abo...

Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee is Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics and Director, Poverty Action Lab at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has taught since 1993. He holds a PhD from Harvard University, an MA from Jawaharlal University, and a BSc from the University of Calcutta. Roland Benabou is Professo...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:496 pages, 6.1 × 9.21 × 1.5 inPublished:March 31, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195305205

ISBN - 13:9780195305203

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Table of Contents

Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee, Roland Benabou and Dilip Mookherjee: Introduction1. Angus Deaton: Measuring PovertyPART I: The Causes of Poverty2. Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson, and James Robinson: Understanding Prosperity and Poverty: Geography, Institutions, and the Reversal of Fortune3. Stanley L. Engerman and Kenneth L. Sokoloff: Colonialism, Inequality, And Long-Run Paths Of Development4. Thomas Piketty: The Kuznets Curve: Yesterday and Tomorrow5. Philippe Aghion and Beatriz Armendariz de Aghion: A New Growth Approach to Poverty Alleviation6. Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee: Globalization and All That7. Pranab Bardhan: The Global Economy and the Poor8. Mukesh Eswaran and Ashok Kotwal: The Role of Agriculture in Development9. T. Paul Schultz: Fertility and Income10. Mukesh Eswaran: Fertility in Developing Countries11. Jean-Jacques Laffont: Corruption and Development12. Edward Miguel: Ethnic Diversity and Poverty ReductionPART II: How Should We Go About Fighting Poverty?13. Emmanuel Saez: Redistribution toward Low Incomes in Richer Countries14. Martin Ravallion: Transfers and Safety Nets in Poor Countries: Revisiting the Trade-Offs and Policy Options15. Dilip Mookherjee: Poverty Persistence and Design of Antipoverty Policies16. Christopher Udry: Child Labor17. Kaushik Basu: Policy Dilemmas for Controlling Child Labor18. Anne Case: The Primacy of Education19. Timothy Besley and Maitreesh Ghatak: Public Goods and Economic Development20. Jean Tirole: Intellectual Property and Health in Developing Countries21. Michael Kremer: Public Policies to Stimulate Development of Vaccines for Neglected Diseases22. Jonathan Morduch: Microinsurance: The Next Revolution?23. Robert M. Townsend: 23) Credit, Intermediation, and Poverty ReductionPART III: New Ways of Thinking About Poverty24. Esther Duflo: Poor but Rational?25. Sendhil Mullainathan: Better Choices to Reduce Poverty26. Kaivan Munshi: Nonmarket Institutions27. Glenn C. Loury: Racial Stigma: Toward a New Paradigm for Discrimination Theory28. Debraj Ray: Aspirations, Poverty and Economic Change

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"A serious examination of where we stand and what we need to do."--Nicholas Kristof, The New York Review of Books