Why are some nations more prosperous than others? Why Nations Fail by Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson, argues that it is not down to climate, geography or culture, but because of institutions. Drawing on an extraordinary range of contemporary and historical examples, from ancient Rome through the Tudors to modern-day China, Acemoglu and Robinson show that to invest and prosper, people need to know that if they work hard, they can make money and actually keep it – and this means sound institutions that allow virtuous circles of innovation, expansion and peace. Based on 15 years of research, and answering the competing arguments of authors ranging from Max Weber to Jeffrey Sachs and Jared Diamond, they blend economics, politics, history and current affairs to provide a new, powerful and persuasive way of understanding wealth and poverty. They offer a pragmatic basis for the hope that at ‘critical junctures’ in history, those mired in poverty can be placed on the path to prosperity – with important consequences for our views on everything from the role of aid to the future of China. James Robinson talks about Why Nations Fail in this special free event.
James Robinson is a political scientist and economist and the Florence Professor of Government at Harvard University, and a world-renowned expert on Latin America and Africa. He is the co-author with Daron Acemoglu of Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy, which won numerous prizes, and Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty.
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