All We've Learnt: Colonial Teachings and Caribean Underdevelopment

Journal des Economistes et des Etudes Humaines, Vol. 12, No. 4, Article 7, 2002

29 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2013

See all articles by Virgil Henry Storr

Virgil Henry Storr

George Mason University - Department of Economics; George Mason University - Mercatus Center; University of Arizona Center for the Philosophy of Freedom

Date Written: December 1, 2002

Abstract

This paper argues that in order to understand West Indian economic underdevelopment, the saliency of the informal institutions that emerged during its colonial period and the effect these institutions have had on the emergence of a local entrepreneurial class can not be discounted. British colonial occupation, I contend, gave rise to two persistent informal institutions that have affected development: a belief in the ability and responsibility of government to direct the economy and pessimism regarding the possibility of entrepreneurial success. Relying on Schumpeter’s discussion of the importance of entrepreneurs to economic development and North’s work on informal institutions, I examine how the poverty of entrepreneurs in the region and the cultures of corruption, privilege and intervention that evolved as a result of the region’s colonial experiences have hampered past efforts at development.

Keywords: Schumpeter, North, informal institutions, Entrepreneur, Caribean development

Suggested Citation

Storr, Virgil Henry, All We've Learnt: Colonial Teachings and Caribean Underdevelopment (December 1, 2002). Journal des Economistes et des Etudes Humaines, Vol. 12, No. 4, Article 7, 2002. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2202851

Virgil Henry Storr (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

George Mason University - Mercatus Center ( email )

3434 Washington Blvd., 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

University of Arizona Center for the Philosophy of Freedom ( email )

Department of History
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

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