The Structural Transformation as a Pathway Out of Poverty: Analytics, Empirics and Politics

61 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2008

See all articles by C. Peter Timmer

C. Peter Timmer

Harvard University - Department of Economics

Selvin Akkus

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: July 23, 2008

Abstract

A powerful historical pathway of structural transformation is experienced by all successful developing countries, and this Working Paper presents the results of new empirical analysis of the process. Making sure the poor are connected to both the structural transformation and to the policy initiatives designed to ameliorate the distributional consequences of rapid transformation has turned out to be a major challenge for policy makers over the past half century. There are successes and failures, and the historical record illuminates what works and what does not. Trying to stop the structural transformation does not work, at least for the poor, and in fact can lead to prolonged immiseration. Investing in the capacity of the poor to cope with change and to participate in its benefits through better education and health does seem to work. Such investments typically require significant public sector resources and policy support, and thus depend on political processes that are themselves conditioned by the pressures generated by the structural transformation itself.

Keywords: structural transformation, global poverty

Suggested Citation

Timmer, C. Peter and Akkus, Selvin, The Structural Transformation as a Pathway Out of Poverty: Analytics, Empirics and Politics (July 23, 2008). Center for Global Development Working Paper No. 150. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1213154 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1213154

C. Peter Timmer (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Department of Economics

Littauer Center
HIID 504
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-9778 (Phone)

Selvin Akkus

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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