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Publication Type
Conference Proceedings
UWI Author(s)
Author, Analytic
Lewis, Patsy
Author Role
Presenter
Author Affiliation
Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies
Paper/Section Title
Grenada: A testing ground for development perspectives
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Proceedings Title
Sixth Annual SALISES Conference: Governance, Institutions and Economic Growth: Reflections on Arthur Lewis’ Theory of Economic Growth
Date of Meeting
March 17-18, 2005
Place of Meeting
Jamaica Pegasus Hotel. Kingston, Jamaica
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Abstract
The practical collapse of the Grenadian economy and the widespread damage to property experienced by most Grenadian after Hurricane Ivan, presents an unusual situation for testing theoretical perspectives on economic development in small states. It is rare that a natural disaster has such a totalizing effect on economic, social and political life as was experienced in Grenada and, before it, Montserrat, after its volcanic eruption. This paper proposes to revisit Arthur Lewis' theoretical perspectives on economic growth and development, particularly against attempts to take a fresh look at the challenges of economic development in small states, reflected in attempts to introduce the element of environment vulnerability, to already established notions of economic vulnerability. The paper, which represents an initial foray into what is meant to be a broader analysis of post-hurricane Ivan and the challenges it presents to Grenada's development, raises more questions than it answers. Specifically, it treats the collapse of tourism and export crops (cocoa and nutmeg) as stabula rasa for constructing a new kind of economic platform. It raises questions as to whether it is possible, whatever the economic model chosen, for a small state to survive a natural disaster on the scale of Hurricane Ivan; what opportunities and challenges such a disaster provides for reconstructing a more 'modern' economy; what is the interrelationship between economics and politics in terms of who would define such a model and what implications this has for democracy; and, what is likely to be the role of the global economic institutions in determining the new face of the Grenadian economy.....
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