Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay: Assessing the Economic Rise of China and India

Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay: Assessing the Economic Rise of China and India

by Pranab Bardhan
     
 

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The recent economic rise of China and India has attracted a great deal of attention--and justifiably so. Together, the two countries account for one-fifth of the global economy and are projected to represent a full third of the world's income by 2025. Yet, many of the views regarding China and India's market reforms and high growth have been tendentious,

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Overview

The recent economic rise of China and India has attracted a great deal of attention--and justifiably so. Together, the two countries account for one-fifth of the global economy and are projected to represent a full third of the world's income by 2025. Yet, many of the views regarding China and India's market reforms and high growth have been tendentious, exaggerated, or oversimplified. Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay scrutinizes the phenomenal rise of both nations, and demolishes the myths that have accumulated around the economic achievements of these two giants in the last quarter century. Exploring the challenges that both countries must overcome to become true leaders in the international economy, Pranab Bardhan looks beyond short-run macroeconomic issues to examine and compare China and India's major policy changes, political and economic structures, and current general performance.

Bardhan investigates the two countries' economic reforms, each nation's pattern and composition of growth, and the problems afflicting their agricultural, industrial, infrastructural, and financial sectors. He considers how these factors affect China and India's poverty, inequality, and environment, how political factors shape each country's pattern of burgeoning capitalism, and how significant poverty reduction in both countries is mainly due to domestic factors--not global integration, as most would believe. He shows how authoritarianism has distorted Chinese development while democratic governance in India has been marred by severe accountability failures.

Full of valuable insights, Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay provides a nuanced picture of China and India's complex political economy at a time of startling global reconfiguration and change.

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Editorial Reviews

Foreign Affairs
Pranab Bardhan's Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay: Assessing the Economic Rise of China and India . . . succinctly summarizes the challenges facing China and India, including environmental degradation, unfavorable demographics, poor infrastructure, and social inequality—threats that the leaders of China and India understand. . . . A more contentious claim offered by Bardhan is that internal reform—not the global market—has been the key driver of both countries' growth.
— Simon Tay
BusinessWorld
The strongest point in Bardhan's study is his insightful account of the role of democracy in promoting as well as hindering economic growth.
— Nayan Chanda
Choice
There is abundant literature on the comparative development of India and China, but most of it explains the difference in their growth rates on the macro level on ideological grounds: slower growth rate in democratic India versus faster development in authoritarian China. In this well-written and properly documented study, Bardhan examines growth in different sectors of the economies, particularly agriculture, industry, trade, infrastructure, savings, and investment rates. . . . This volume is an important reference for advanced students and researchers interested in the economic growth of these two Asian giants.
China Journal
Bardhan's refusal to shy away from complexity I refreshing, and it is this which distinguishes his book from many others in the field. . . . Although this is a book primarily focused on economics, it is not written solely for economists. It is a concise, accessible volume which can provide a valuable resource for anyone wanting to understand better the myriad complexities surrounding the rise of China and India.
— Louise Merrington
Developing Economies
The author of this small volume is to be commended for packing so much useful information and analysis into such a short space.
— Dwight H. Perkins
Forbes.com - Jeff Wasserstrom
[E]xcellent. . . . Bardhan writes with remarkable clarity about complex issues, such as the widely varying ways that corruption can affect the economy, and the positive as well as negative legacy of the Maoist era for China in terms of its recent trajectory. . . . He also shows some welcome stylistic flair, quoting poetry to good effect in one section (how often do economists do that?).
Foreign Affairs - Simon Tay
Pranab Bardhan's Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay: Assessing the Economic Rise of China and India . . . succinctly summarizes the challenges facing China and India, including environmental degradation, unfavorable demographics, poor infrastructure, and social inequality—threats that the leaders of China and India understand. . . . A more contentious claim offered by Bardhan is that internal reform—not the global market—has been the key driver of both countries' growth.
BusinessWorld - Nayan Chanda
The strongest point in Bardhan's study is his insightful account of the role of democracy in promoting as well as hindering economic growth.
Mint - Siddharth Singh
Bardhan's book is a good place to understand the political economy of constraints the two economies are likely to face as they march ahead.
China Journal - Louise Merrington
Bardhan's refusal to shy away from complexity I refreshing, and it is this which distinguishes his book from many others in the field. . . . Although this is a book primarily focused on economics, it is not written solely for economists. It is a concise, accessible volume which can provide a valuable resource for anyone wanting to understand better the myriad complexities surrounding the rise of China and India.
Developing Economies - Dwight H. Perkins
The author of this small volume is to be commended for packing so much useful information and analysis into such a short space.
From the Publisher

"[E]xcellent. . . . Bardhan writes with remarkable clarity about complex issues, such as the widely varying ways that corruption can affect the economy, and the positive as well as negative legacy of the Maoist era for China in terms of its recent trajectory. . . . He also shows some welcome stylistic flair, quoting poetry to good effect in one section (how often do economists do that?)."--Jeff Wasserstrom, Forbes.com

"Pranab Bardhan's Awakening Giants, Feet of Clay: Assessing the Economic Rise of China and India . . . succinctly summarizes the challenges facing China and India, including environmental degradation, unfavorable demographics, poor infrastructure, and social inequality--threats that the leaders of China and India understand. . . . A more contentious claim offered by Bardhan is that internal reform--not the global market--has been the key driver of both countries' growth."--Simon Tay, Foreign Affairs

"The strongest point in Bardhan's study is his insightful account of the role of democracy in promoting as well as hindering economic growth."--Nayan Chanda, BusinessWorld

"There is abundant literature on the comparative development of India and China, but most of it explains the difference in their growth rates on the macro level on ideological grounds: slower growth rate in democratic India versus faster development in authoritarian China. In this well-written and properly documented study, Bardhan examines growth in different sectors of the economies, particularly agriculture, industry, trade, infrastructure, savings, and investment rates. . . . This volume is an important reference for advanced students and researchers interested in the economic growth of these two Asian giants."--Choice

"Bardhan's book is a good place to understand the political economy of constraints the two economies are likely to face as they march ahead."--Siddharth Singh, Mint

"Bardhan's refusal to shy away from complexity I refreshing, and it is this which distinguishes his book from many others in the field. . . . Although this is a book primarily focused on economics, it is not written solely for economists. It is a concise, accessible volume which can provide a valuable resource for anyone wanting to understand better the myriad complexities surrounding the rise of China and India."--Louise Merrington, China Journal

"The author of this small volume is to be commended for packing so much useful information and analysis into such a short space."--Dwight H. Perkins, Developing Economies

Forbes.com
[E]xcellent. . . . Bardhan writes with remarkable clarity about complex issues, such as the widely varying ways that corruption can affect the economy, and the positive as well as negative legacy of the Maoist era for China in terms of its recent trajectory. . . . He also shows some welcome stylistic flair, quoting poetry to good effect in one section (how often do economists do that?).
— Jeff Wasserstrom
Mint
Bardhan's book is a good place to understand the political economy of constraints the two economies are likely to face as they march ahead.
— Siddharth Singh

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781400845002
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
12/30/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
192
File size:
2 MB

What People are saying about this

Kaushik Basu
Of the several books making general comparisons of the recent growth experiences of China and India, this one is the best I have read. It is full of useful data, it is a great source of information, and it contains insights that will be interesting to general readers.
Kaushik Basu, Cornell University
Tarun Khanna
Bardhan's book is erudite, informative, and accessible, and his scrutiny of the conventional wisdom about the past quarter century of reform in China and India is always provocative. You do not have to agree with him to be stimulated and rewarded by his insightful scholarship. This book deserves a wide audience.
Tarun Khanna, author of "Billions of Entrepreneurs: How China and India Are Reshaping Their Futures, and Yours"
Philip Keefer
This book is an important reference for anyone interested in growth and poverty alleviation in China and India. It makes eye-opening comparisons and offers acute insights across such wide-ranging topics as poverty and inequality, labor and anticompetitive regulations, industrial concentration in India compared to other countries, electricity in Indian agriculture, Chinese financing of roads, and Indian and Chinese business-state relations.
Philip Keefer, World Bank

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