Ideas and Institutions: Developmentalism in Brazil and Argentina

Overview

In Ideas and Institutions, Kathryn Sikkink illuminates a key question in contemporary political economy: What power do ideas wield in the world of politics and policy? Sikkink traces the effects of one enormously influential set of ideas, developmentalism, on the two largest economies in Latin America, Brazil and Argentina.

Introduced under the intellectual leadership of Raúl Prebisch at the U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America, developmentalism was embraced as national ...

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Overview

In Ideas and Institutions, Kathryn Sikkink illuminates a key question in contemporary political economy: What power do ideas wield in the world of politics and policy? Sikkink traces the effects of one enormously influential set of ideas, developmentalism, on the two largest economies in Latin America, Brazil and Argentina.

Introduced under the intellectual leadership of Raúl Prebisch at the U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America, developmentalism was embraced as national policy in many postwar developing economies. Drawing upon extensive archival research and interviews, Sikkink explores the adoption, implementation, and consolidation of the developmentalist model of economic policy in Brazil and Argentina in the 1950s and 1960s, focusing on the governments of Juscelino Kubitschek and Arturo Frondizi, respectively.

In accounting for the initial decision to adopt developmentalist policies in Latin America and the persistence of the policy package in the region, she highlights the importance of political and economic ideas, the comparative effects of different national institutions, and the variable ability of political leaders to mobilize resources and support.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Sikkink contributes significantly to the analysis of the role of ideas and institutions (as opposed to 'interests') in adopting economic development models, in this intriguing study of ‘developmentalism’ in Brazil (1956–61) and Argentina (1958–62). . . . Sikkink asks why both countries adopted this approach (mostly for ideological reasons), and why it largely succeeded in Brazil and failed in Argentina."—Choice

"This is an outstanding study of a topic central to Latin America's development after 1945. It will give both experts and students a clear understanding of the state-directed developmentalism in Latin America that attained hegemonic status among progressive regimes by the end of the 1950s and that still garners powerful support in political circles. . . . Sikkink's work presents a fruitful approach to the vexed question of Latin America's stymied development in the years after 1945."—Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

"A detailed and carefully crafted comparative historical analysis showing that economic policy outcomes, far from being affected only by international constraints and opportunities, are also determined by domestic political processes involving political economic ideas, the state's institutional capacity to implement them, and the political leadership's ability to mobilize political and ideological resources on their behalf."—Emanuel Adler, University of Toronto

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801478673
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publication date: 8/21/2012
  • Series: Cornell Studies in Political Economy Series
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Kathryn Sikkink is McKnight Presidential Chair in Political Science and Regents Professor of Political Science at the University of Minnesota, and is an affiliated faculty member at the University of Minnesota Law School. Her other books include, as coeditor, Restructuring World Politics: Transnational Social Movements, Networks, and Norms.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. The International Setting and the Origins of Developmentalism
3. Developmentalism in Argentina, 1955–1962
4. Developmentalism in Brazil, 1954–1961
5. The State in Brazil and Argentina: State Autonomy and Capacity Compared
6. Implementing Developmentalism: The Mobilization of Financial, Technical, and Political Resources
Conclusion

Appendix: List of Interviews

Index

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