Far more than an intellectual puzzle for pundits, economists, and policymakers, economic growthits makings and workingsis a subject that affects the well-being of billions of people around the globe. In The Mystery of Economic Growth, Elhanan Helpman discusses the vast research that has revolutionized understanding of this subject in recent years, and summarizes and explains its critical messages in clear, concise, and accessible terms.
The tale of growth economics, as Helpman tells it, is organized around a number of themes: the importance of the accumulation of physical and human capital; the effect of technological factors on the rate of this accumulation; the process of knowledge creation and its influence on productivity; the interdependence of the growth rates of different countries; and, finally, the role of economic and political institutions in encouraging accumulation, innovation, and change.
One of the leading researchers of economic growth, Helpman succinctly reviews, critiques, and integrates current researchon capital accumulation, education, productivity, trade, inequality, geography, and institutionsand clarifies its relevance for global economic inequities. In particular, he points to institutionsincluding property rights protection, legal systems, customs, and political systemsas the key to the mystery of economic growth. Solving this mystery could lead to policies capable of setting the poorest countries on the path toward sustained growth of per capita income and all that that impliesand Helpman's work is a welcome and necessary step in this direction.
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|Publisher:||Harvard University Press|
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About the Author
Elhanan Helpman is Galen L. Stone Professor of International Trade at Harvard University and the author of many research articles and books.
Table of ContentsContents Preface 1. Background 2. Accumulation 3. Productivity 4. Innovation 5. Interdependence 6. Inequality 7. Institutions and Politics Glossary Notes References Index
What People are Saying About This
Professor Helpman's analytic powers and extraordinary grasp of the subject make his book, The Mystery of Economic Growth, the most comprehensive analysis of economic growth to date. The wide variety of relevant issues, from technological development through price and income causes and consequences to institutional changes are made available to the scholar and the interested general reader. The evaluations of different strands are judicious and wise, as well as highly representative of the literature.
Kenneth Arrow, Nobel Laureate in Economics
Elhanan Helpman has made fundamental contributions to our understanding of economic growth. Here he steps back and assesses what we have learned. Each page shines with profound knowledge, erudition, and wisdom.
Andrei Shleifer, co-author of The Grabbing Hand: Government Pathologies and Their Cures
Want to understand the latest and best thinking on economic growth? Then read this little book. Professor Helpman has provided an enormously useful reader's guide to what is known (and what is not known) about this complex, fascinating, and all-important subject.
Martin L. Weitzman, author of Income, Wealth, and the Maximum Principle