Tracking Development in South-East Asia and sub-Saharan Africa: The Primacy of Policy
Article first published online: 16 JAN 2012
© The Authors 2012. Development Policy Review © 2012 Overseas Development Institute.
Development Policy Review
Special Issue: Tracking Development in South-East Asia and sub-Saharan Africa
Volume 30, Issue Supplement s1, pages s5–s24, February 2012
How to Cite
van Donge, J. K., Henley, D. and Lewis, P. (2012), Tracking Development in South-East Asia and sub-Saharan Africa: The Primacy of Policy. Development Policy Review, 30: s5–s24. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-7679.2012.00563.x
- Issue published online: 16 JAN 2012
- Article first published online: 16 JAN 2012
- first submitted July 2010; final revision accepted May 2011
- development policy;
- sustained growth;
- poverty reduction
The Tracking Development project aims to explain the divergences in development outcomes in sub-Saharan Africa and South-East Asia over the past fifty years through the pair-wise comparison of four countries in each region. The development trajectories in South-East Asia reveal that the transition to sustained growth has consistently been associated with policies aimed at (i) macroeconomic stabilisation; (ii) improving life in the rural sector, increasing agricultural productivity and ensuring an ample supply of food; and (iii) liberalising the economy and creating conditions of economic freedom, particularly for peasant farmers and other small actors. In Africa, initiatives in these directions have been taken in some instances, but the simultaneous pursuit of all three policy objectives has not occurred. Most noticeably, policies aimed at macroeconomic stabilisation were pursued in both regions, but whereas in South-East Asia these were associated with policies leading to poverty reduction, this was not the case in Africa.