The Importance of Being Defunct (Presidential Address)

Publication Year : 1985

For development economists these arc the days of great expectations. Development economics as a discipline, born only three decades ago, has come to stay, notwithstanding the threats to its existence issued openly by such friends as Schultz [63], Bauer [2], Little [44], and Lal [39]. New theoretical constructs have been devised and novel empirical studies done to comprehend better the forces of change in developing countries. While of late there may not have been great festivity in the realm of ideas, the force of circumstances has widened the problem canvas of development economics and has opened up new vistas for economists to explore- much beyond the expectations of its founding fathers. Also notwithstanding the great diversity in the experience of individual countries, development economists may legitimately draw some comfort from the thought that their ideas have changed the developing world for the better.

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