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Month: November 2014

Some Countries Just Can’t Catch a Break: A Review of the Theories

Some Countries Just Can’t Catch a Break: A Review of the Theories

In the last post, I explained the concept of “least developed countries” and discussed some of the characteristics shared by the 48 countries that bear the label. In this post, I’ll review a few different theories for why some countries are so much poorer than others. In Why Nations Fail, Daron Acemoglu and James A Robinson, economists at MIT and Harvard, respectively, argue that the key to prosperity are strong institutions. This is a common refrain among a lot of…

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Why Do Some Countries Have It So Bad?

Why Do Some Countries Have It So Bad?

Open a newspaper today and you’ll be bombarded with a panoply of terrible news. Ebola is ravaging West Africa, with a projected 10,000 new cases per week and the possibility for 1.4 million people infected in Sierra Leone and Liberia alone. Two decades ago, those same countries were embroiled in one of the most horrific civil wars in modern history. A few thousand miles away, a possible genocide in the Central African Republic has been unfolding – largely unnoticed –…

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