Do No Harm: Aid, Weak Institutions and the Missing Middle in Africa
AbstractThe implicit assumption of the donor community is that Africa is trapped by its poverty, and that aid is necessary if it is to escape. This article suggests an alternative view: that Africa is caught in an institutional trap, signalled and reinforced by the small share of income of its independent middle strata. Theory and historical experience elsewhere suggest that a robust middle-income group contributes critically to the creation and sustenance of healthy institutions, particularly of the state. The article argues that if external aid is to be helpful for institution-building in Africa's weak and fragile states, donors need to emphasise not providing more aid but minimising the risks more aid poses for this group. Copyright 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Overseas Development Institute in its journal Development Policy Review.
Volume (Year): 25 (2007)
Issue (Month): 5 (09)
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Other versions of this item:
- Nancy Birdsall, 2007. "Do No Harm: Aid, Weak Institutions, and the Missing Middle in Africa," Working Papers 113, Center for Global Development.
- E0 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General
- F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
- F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
- F35 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Aid
- O43 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
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- Léonce Ndikumana, 2013. "Applying Evaluation to Development and Aid: Can Evaluation Bridge the Micro-macro Gaps in Aid Effectiveness?," Published Studies article-leonce-ndikumana-, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
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