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World Development Report 2009: Reshaping Economic Geography

2.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0821376409
ISBN-10: 0821376403
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Product Details

  • Series: World Development Report
  • Hardcover: 408 pages
  • Publisher: World Bank Publications (November 17, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0821376403
  • ISBN-13: 978-0821376409
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 8.2 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,422,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chief Economist at Kuwait China Investment Company. Previously, he was a Senior Economist at the World Bank, a Research Associate at Harvard University, and an economist at the Inter-American Development Bank. His main interests include macroeconomics, fiscal policy, public finance, investment, welfare theory, and development. He has published articles and books.

In 2003, he published "What do you mean?", a book on efficiency and equity in social services delivery, by IADB/The Johns Hopkins University Press. In 2007, he co-authored The World Bank, a book in Italian by Il Mulino. In 2008, he co-authored Reshaping Economic Geography in East Asia, a book by The World Bank.

Main working papers include:

1) "Rising growth, declining investment : the puzzle of the Philippines". English (World Bank Working Paper Series);

2) "Reaching the millennium development goals : Mauritania should care". English (World Bank Working Paper Series);

3) "NHA in Latin America and Caribbean. Concepts, Results and Policy Uses". English and Spanish (IADB/INDES Working Paper Series); and

4) "Mind the Gap. Suggestions on How to Bridge Gender Gaps in Developing Regions". English and Spanish (IADB/INDES Working Paper Series).

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Format: Paperback
Consider the fancy "Geography in motion" chapter were to be taken for granted: you could start reading ("navigating") any of the following chapters independently ("vertically"). This is what I did. I am a total neophyte to both economics, and economic geography, but neither to general geography, nor to science in general. Because I wanted to become more acquainted with the facts behind development politics, I considered this lavishly illustrated book a good choice. In short: I was strongly disappointed, and after only a few chapters, I will not continue (and definitely not recomend!) this sloppily written and/or edited oevre, unless anyone tells me that there are paragraphs in this book that worth it.

Consider you start reading this book on p. 50 (Density). This is a fantastic two-page spread for curious people in general and for scientists and Belgians in particular: curious people will learn in a lenghty paragraph, that
"The primary city is often but not always the national administrative center and the seat of political power: Cambodia's Phnom Penh, Cameroon's Yaounde, and Colombia's Bogotá. A country's leading city also tends to be it's most diversified, both in the provision of goods and services and in cultural and other amenities. For the cultural amenities, think of Broadway in New York City, the Opera House in Sydney, and the Louvre in Paris. But think also of Trinidad and Tobago's Port of Spain, famous for the annual carnival that attracts large numbers of visitors."
Thank you, World Bank authors, for this valuable information which will definitely help "Reshaping Economic Geography"!

Scientists will be interested in Figure 1.2 on that same page, which shows "Log of rank" vs. "Log of population" for the relative size distribution of settlements.
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Format: Paperback
In this relatively short book the World Bank writers argue that cities matter more than people have thought. The world is NOT flat, as Thomas Friedman alleges because location still matters greatly. Conglomeration allows for both internal and external economies of scale. Hence, most of the world's income and wealth is tightly clustered around the major cities of the world.

Some of the graphics are stunning. This is one of the best WDR's in many years, and coincidentally was released the year that Paul Krugman won the Nobel Prize for economic geography and trade.
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