Commission on Growth and Development

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The Growth Commission’s reports identify the ingredients that, if used in the right country-specific recipe, can deliver growth and help lift populations out of poverty. The Commission, consisting of 19 experienced leaders and 2 Nobel prize-winning economists, has released several commission reports, thematic volumes, and background working papers. The spring 2010 volume is the final book from the Commission. The Commission is succeeded by The Growth Dialogue.

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  • Publication
    Growth Strategies and Dynamics: Insights from Country Experiences
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008) El-Erian, Mohamed A.; Spence, Michael
    The paper examines the challenges that developing countries face in accelerating and sustaining growth. The cases of China and India are examined to illustrate a more general phenomenon which might be called model uncertainty. As a developing economy grows, its market and regulatory institutions change and their capabilities increase. As a result, growth strategies and policies and the role of government shift. Further, as the models of economies in these transitional states are incomplete and because models used to predict policy impacts in advanced economies may not provided accurate predictions in the developing economy case, growth strategies and policies need to be responsive and to evolve as the economy matures. This has lead governments in countries that have sustained high growth to be somewhat pragmatic, to treat the policy directions that emerge from the advanced economy model with circumspection, to be somewhat experimental in seeking to accelerate export diversification, to be sensitive to risks, and as a result to proceed gradually in areas such as the timing and sequencing of opening up on the current and capital accounts. The last is an area in which existing theory provides relatively little specific guidance, but in which there are relatively high risks that decline over time as the market matures.
  • Publication
    Battles Half Won: The Political Economy of India's Growth and Economic Policy since Independence
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008) Ahmed, Sadiq; Varshney, Ashutosh
    Rapid growth since 1980 has transformed India from the world's 50th ranked economy in nominal U.S. dollars to the 10th largest in 2005. The growth of per capita income has helped reduce poverty. At the same time, evidence suggests that income inequality is rising and that the gap in average per capita income between the rich and poor states is growing. This paper reviews India's long term growth experience with a view to understanding the determinants of growth and the underlying political economy. The paper looks specifically at the political economy of India's growth transformation from a low-growth environment (pre-1980s) to a rapid-growth environment (post 1980s) and asks how sustainable is this transformation in view of concerns about regional disparity and income inequality. The paper concludes that the pledge that India's post-independence leadership had undertaken to abolish mass poverty remains only partially redeemed. Half the battle still lies ahead. Many more would like the fruits of the economic boom to come to them. The greatest challenge for India's policy makers today is to balance the growth momentum with inclusionary policies.