One of the most important issues in comparative politics is the relationship between the state and society and the implications of different relationships for long-term social and economic development. Exploring the contribution states can make to overcoming collective action problems and creating collective goods favourable to social, economic, and political development, the contributors to this significant volume examine how state-society relations as well as features of state structure shape the conditions under which states seek to advance development and the conditions that make success more or less likely. Particular focus is given to bureaucratic oversight, market functioning, and the assertion of democratic demands discipline state actions and contribute to state effectiveness. These propositions and the social mechanisms underlying them are examined in comparative historical and cross-national statistical analyses. The conclusion will also evaluate the results for current policy concerns.
"This book adds a whole other dimension of high quality scholarship and history to the age old debate about the state. A really refreshing book that stimulates a lot of interest."
- Alice Amsden, Barton L. Wellor Professor of Political Economy, MIT, Author of The Rise of the "Rest"
"This thought-provoking and remarkably timely volume shows the tremendous benefits of taking the long view. Lange, Rueschemeyer and their colleagues demonstrate that it takes time - often a lot of it - to build the political and economic foundations for successful development. More important, they show why this is so. In the process, they open up prospects for more successful interventions - based on clear reasoning and the lessons of experience rather than wishful thinking - designed to spread the prospects for successful development more widely and swiftly."
- Paul Pierson, Professor of Political Science, UC Berkeley, Author of Politics in Time
"Roll over Max Weber! This collection of essays on the impact of states on economic development combines sociological theory with quantitative and qualitative analysis, in mercifully plain English. Students will find it enjoyable; scholars will learn from its careful accounts of how exactly "history matters"; and even CIA analysts will discover how to improve their current efforts at nation building."
- Robert Wade, Professor of Political Economy, London School of Economics, Author of Governing the Marketp>