Development Studies Paradigms

Since the mid-1990s, growing concerns have been voiced about the overall failure of the neo-liberal ‘laissez-faire’ agenda to promote growth and contribute to poverty reduction. Development policies and discourses have moved away from the so-called Washington consensus, which was based on the idea that “growth is threatened more by government incompetence and corruption than by market failures” (Birdsall and Fukuyama 2011). In the current “post-Washington consensus” phase (Stiglitz 1999) critical economists argue that the liberalization of the market should be preceded by strengthening state institutions and the development of strong economic policies and plans under the control of the state (Fine et al. 2004; Hayami 2003). Thus, attention has shifted to the role of the state and government institutions from obstacles to potential drivers of economic growth.

In the preliminary phase of the research project “The Developmental State Strikes Back?”, Guive KHAN-MOHAMMAD has given his attention to this shift of development studies paradigms. According to him, the fail of the Washington Consensus as well as the success of South Asian models of development led to create an international context particularly conducive to a return of the state as driver of development.

For more information, see KHAN-MOHAMMAD, G. (2017). L’Etat développementaliste en Afrique: une lecture paradigmatique. Working Papers “The Developmental State Strikes Back?”, 1.