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The Institutions Curse
Natural Resources, Politics, and Development

$34.99 (G)

Part of Business and Public Policy

  • Date Published: August 2016
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781316503362

$ 34.99 (G)

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About the Authors
  • The 'resource curse' is the view that countries with extensive natural resources tend to suffer from a host of undesirable outcomes, including the weakening of state capacity, authoritarianism, fewer public goods, war, and economic stagnation. This book debunks this view, arguing that there is an 'institutions curse' rather than a resource curse. Legacies endemic to the developing world have impelled many countries to develop natural resources as a default sector in lieu of cultivating modern and diversified economies, and bad institutions have also condemned nations to suffer from ills unduly attributed to minerals and oil. Victor Menaldo also argues that natural resources can actually play an integral role in stimulating state capacity, capitalism, industrialization, and democracy, even if resources are themselves often a symptom of underdevelopment. Despite being cursed by their institutions, weak states are blessed by their resources: greater oil means more development, both historically and across countries today.

    • A refreshingly new take on a pedigreed literature, proposing a new view set of facts that challenges conventional wisdom
    • Addresses issues of industrialization, finance, crony capitalism, and the politics of developing countries without unnecessary complexity and formality
    • Blends factoids, anecdotes, and history from across the world, along with advanced econometric techniques, to tell a compelling and iconoclastic story
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This book explores the role of natural resources, especially oil, in the development of countries. … A wide geographic area is covered, including but not limited to North America, Europe and the Middle East. … The author argues that political institutions, not resource endowment, are the basis for differences in development. … It adds to the literature on the role of natural resources, institutions, and development. Footnotes and references. … Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.' J. E. Weaver, Choice

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2016
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781316503362
    • length: 412 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 153 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.71kg
    • contains: 48 b/w illus. 10 maps 10 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Three puzzles and some building blocks
    3. Intellectual heritage of the institutions curse view
    4. The institutions curse
    5. Not manna from heaven after all: the endogeneity of oil
    6. The resource blessing
    7. Whither the Arab Spring?
    8. Conclusions.

  • Author

    Victor Menaldo, University of Washington
    Victor Menaldo is an associate professor of Political Science at the University of Washington and an affiliated faculty of the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences, Near and Middle Eastern Studies, and the Center for Environmental Politics. He has published, or has forthcoming articles in, the American Political Science Review, the American Journal of Political Science, the Journal of Politics, the British Journal of Political Science, the Annual Review of Political Science, Comparative Political Studies, World Politics, Comparative Politics, International Studies Quarterly, Economics and Politics, Political Science Quarterly, and Policy Sciences. He has also penned op-eds in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, USA Today, Foreign Policy, and the Seattle Times.

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