Pakistan Institute of Development Economics

PDR

THE PAKISTAN DEVELOPMENT REVIEW 

Development Economists in “Emperor’s Clothes”? (Presidential Address)

In this paper, I have taken upon myself the onerous task of ensuring that development economists are appropriately clothed, at least intellectually if not otherwise. In discharging this noble task in a ‘scientific’ fashion I assume that, other things being equal, the shortest route to the development economist’s heart is through his or her wardrobe! If anyone, of course a non-economist, is put off by such an esoteric assumption, then he must remember that the economist’s propensity to assume is close to one. That being the state of the art, I can with good conscience rest on this cosy assumption my basic, or to use the demographer’s sex-laden phraseology, the pregnant question: Do development economists wear the sexy, see through “Emperor’s Clothes”, which show everything and hide nothing?

Syed Nawab Haider Naqvi

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