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Home / Amol Agrawal: Mostly Economics / Crouching Beliefs, Hidden Biases: The Rise and Fall of Growth Narratives

Crouching Beliefs, Hidden Biases: The Rise and Fall of Growth Narratives

Summary:
Interesting IMF paper by  Reda Cherif ,Marc Engher and Fuad Hasanov. HT: Manas Chakravarty who reviews the paper in his typical style (link corrected; Thanks Anantha for the pointer). The authors track how and why certain growth terms/factors become fashionable over time: The debate among economists about an optimal growth recipe has been the subject of competing “narratives.” We identify four major growth narratives using the text analytics of IMF country reports over 1978-2019. The narrative “Economic Structure”—services, manufacturing, and agriculture—has been on a secular decline overshadowed by the “Structural Reforms”—competitiveness, transparency, and governance. We observe the rise and fall of the “Washington Consensus”—privatization and liberalization— and the rise to

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Interesting IMF paper by  Reda Cherif ,Marc Engher and Fuad Hasanov. HT: Manas Chakravarty who reviews the paper in his typical style (link corrected; Thanks Anantha for the pointer).

The authors track how and why certain growth terms/factors become fashionable over time:

The debate among economists about an optimal growth recipe has been the subject of competing “narratives.” We identify four major growth narratives using the text analytics of IMF country reports over 1978-2019. The narrative “Economic Structure”—services, manufacturing, and agriculture—has been on a secular decline overshadowed by the “Structural Reforms”—competitiveness, transparency, and governance. We observe the rise and fall of the “Washington Consensus”—privatization and liberalization— and the rise to dominance of the “Washington Constellation,” a collection of many disparate terms such as productivity, tourism, and inequality. Growth theory concepts such as innovation, technology, and export policy have been marginal while industrial policy, which was once perceived positively, is making a comeback.

On industrial policy read this other paper by the same IMF econs: The Return of the Policy That Shall Not Be Named: Principles of Industrial Policy. Industrial policy is almost like saying Lord Voldemort!

Amol Agrawal
I am currently pursuing my PhD in economics. I have work-ex of nearly 10 years with most of those years spent figuring economic research in Mumbai’s financial sector.

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