Why Nations Fail

James Robinson
Level: beginner
TEDx Talks, 2014
Perspective: Institutionalist Economics
Topic: emerging economies, Innovation, institutions
Format: Lecture
Duration: 00:18:33
Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsZDlBU36n0&t=18s

James Robinson gives in this talk a short introduction into the theory and ideas of his popular book "Why Nations Fail" which was published together with D. Acemoglu in 2012. With many real-life examples, he gives a lively description of the fundamentals for economic success from an institutionalist view.

According to Robinson, the nature of institutions is a crucial factor for economic success. Whether institutions are inclusive (such as in prosperous economies) or extractive (poor economies) stems from the nation's political process and the distribution of political power.

Comment from our editors:

Albeit an interesting introduction to the ideas of institutionalist economics, the talk is limited and one-dimensional. More importantly, the choice of the very title "Why Nations Fail" seems somewhat unfortunate; the content of the talk is more related with the idea of "why some economies are thriving and others are not". Calling a nation a failure just for the fact of being underdeveloped may be considered an exaggeration. 

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