Ideas & Approach
Our studies are based on a number of underlying ideas which set out the reference points from which an individual country is viewed from an economics perspective:
1. A country’s economy is measured by the nature of it’s insertion in the international economy.
2. The different parts of Eurasia - Japan, China, India, Islam & the Christian West - were more of less equals until the discovery of America by the West
3. The discovery of America, and the concurrent exploitation of black slave labour, gave a vast stimulus to the economies of Europe which led to a new flourishing of scientific and technical innovation
4. This fluorescence, which was unique to Europe in that age, led to the industrial revolution and the expansion of productive capacities tens and hundreds of fold.
5. The rise of the West led to the fall of the rest of Eurasia as their markets were penetrated by industrially manufactured goods (Japan excepted). The collapse of domestic industry disrupted the internal linkages in their economies and sent them into downward spirals in the nineteenth century.
6. The economic history of the post-War age is the study of how the various civilizations and political entities of Eurasia have tried to recover their domestic markets, create the institutions and structures required in order to acquire scientific and technical knowledge and find an insertion into the international economy based on comparative advantage.
7. Given the enormous changes in the economies of Asia especially in the last few decades it can now be argued that the age of the West is over and it is now merely one of several advanced civilizations
8. Latin America is at a crossroads in this context in that it has a mixed Western, Native American and African heritage. It’s international insertion in the nineteenth century was as part of Britain’s informal empire and in the twentieth century individual countries attempted to create the basis for industrialisation.
9. Sub-Saharan Africa is only just coming to terms with the basics of State formation after having inherited totally artificial political entities from the departing colonial powers and is now finding it’s international insertion as a supply region to Asia.
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