Book Review of Govern Like Us: U.S. Expectations of Poor Countries. M. A. Thomas. New York: Columbia University Press, 2015.
3 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2015
Date Written: July 23, 2015
Should international partners drastically change the way they support poor governments? Thomas’ idea of leveraging patronage networks for better results is not new, as presented in the book reviewed here. Others have argued before that there are conditions under which corruption can provide the solution to development problems such as overcoming divisions among ruling elites that could lead to violence. And many to this day argue that effective support needs to be designed and implemented in accord with contextual reality. But there is no magic bullet to improve governance. Thomas’ focus on the revenue constraint is a useful contribution to add to the mix, but reformers will need a larger toolbox to make headway.
Keywords: country, poor, governance, economic, access
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