The Globalization Paradox: Why Global Markets, States, and Democracy Can't Coexist

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9780199603336: The Globalization Paradox: Why Global Markets, States, and Democracy Can't Coexist

For a century, economists have driven forward the cause of globalization in financial institutions, labour markets, and trade. Yet there have been consistent warning signs that a global economy and free trade might not always be advantageous. Where are the pressure points? What could be done about them? Dani Rodrik examines the back-story from its seventeenth-century origins through the milestones of the gold standard, the Bretton Woods Agreement, and the Washington Consensus, to the present day. Although economic globalization has enabled unprecedented levels of prosperity in advanced countries and has been a boon to hundreds of millions of poor workers in China and elsewhere in Asia, it is a concept that rests on shaky pillars, he contends. Its long-term sustainability is not a given. The heart of Rodrik's argument is a fundamental 'trilemma': that we cannot simultaneously pursue democracy, national self-determination, and economic globalization. Give too much power to governments, and you have protectionism. Give markets too much freedom, and you have an unstable world economy with little social and political support from those it is supposed to help. Rodrik argues for smart globalization, not maximum globalization.

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About the Author:

Dani Rodrik is one of the world's top economists, well known for his original and prescient analyses of globalization and economic development. His ideas on improving national and global economic policies - in the fields of trade, industry, finance, and growth - have been highly influential among economists and policy makers alike. His 1997 book Has Globalization Gone Too Far? was called one of the decade's best economics books in Business Week. Rodrik's syndicated monthly columns for the Project Syndicate network are published in scores of newspapers around the world. His blog, "Unconventional thoughts on economic development and globalization" is widely read and frequently cited in newspapers and magazines such as The New York Times and The Economist. In 2007, he was recognized as the first recipient of the prestigious Albert O. Hirschman award of the Social Science Research Council (New York).

Review:

“Takes on the biggest issue of our time―globalization―and eloquently enlarges the debate about the extent and limits of global cooperation.”
- Gordon Brown

“Dani Rodrik may be globalization’s most prominent―and most thoughtful―gadfly. In The Globalization Paradox he wonders aloud whether extreme globalization undermines democracy―and vice versa. Read it and you’ll wonder too.”
- Alan S. Blinder, former vice-chairman of the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors

“In this powerfully argued book, Dani Rodrik makes the case for country-specific paths to economic development and saner, more sustainable forms of growth. A provocative look at the excesses of hyperglobalization, The Globalization Paradox should be required reading for those who seek to prevent the financial crises and unfair trade practices that feed the backlash against the open markets.”
- Nouriel Roubini coauthor of Crisis Economics: A Crash Course in the Future of Finance

“In this cogent, well-written book, Rodrik, a Harvard economist, critiques unalloyed globalization enthusiasts, taking aim at their desire to fully liberalize foreign trade and capital movements.”
- Richard N. Cooper, Foreign Affairs

“Although [Rodrik’s] message is nuanced and rigorous, drawing on history, logic and the latest economic data, he manages to convey it in simple, powerful prose that any reader can follow....a much-needed addendum to [Adam] Smith’s famous formulation.”
- Steven Pearlstein, Washington Post

“Simply the best recent treatment of the globalization dilemma that I've read, by an economist or anyone else....He gives us nothing less than a general theory of globalization, development, democracy, and the state. The book provides the pleasure of following a thoughtful, critical mind working through a complex puzzle. Rodrik writes in highly friendly and nontechnical prose, blending a wide-ranging knowledge of economic history and politics and a gentle, occasionally incredulous, skepticism about the narrow and distorting lens of his fellow economists.”
- Robert Kuttner, The American Prospect

“A Big Book, one that may shape a new way of thinking about the global economy. . . . The style is conversational, but sweeping and authoritative―professorial in the positive sense. Rodrik is less of a polemicist . . . preferring to stay inside the tent, but he can pack a polite punch when necessary.”
- Duncan Green, Oxfam International, author of From Poverty to Power

“Mr. Rodrik is exactly what the doctor ordered because economics over the past few years has become hyper-politicized (thank you, Paul Krugman) yet never more dismal. Well-written, witty, crafted by an author who doesn’t jump the "Freakonomics" shark, The Globalization Paradox reminds us that economists don’t exist without data, and data comes, ultimately, from the vision and labor of those in the marketplace.”
- Robert Nersesian, New York Journal of Books

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