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Thirlwall's Law and Uneven Development


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  • Amitava Krishna Dutt


Thirlwall's analysis of balance-of-payments-constrained growth, and what has come to be called Thirlwall's Law, have usually been used to understand the determinants of growth for individual countries. This paper argues that another important use of Thirlwall's Law is to understand the mechanics of uneven development between rich and poor countries. To contribute to such an analysis the paper incorporates Thirlwall's analysis into a model of North-South trade to show how it explains uneven development. The paper also points to the need for empirical work necessary for relating Thirlwall's Law to uneven development, which is different from the work related to the law that has proliferated in recent years.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by M.E. Sharpe, Inc. in its journal Journal of Post Keynesian Economics.

Volume (Year): 24 (2002)
Issue (Month): 3 (April)
Pages: 367-390

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Handle: RePEc:mes:postke:v:24:y:2002:i:3:p:367-390

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Keywords: Balance-of-payments constraint; Global inequality; Growth; Import elasticity; North-South trade; Thirlwall's Law; Terms of trade; Uneven development;


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Cited by:
  1. Anthony P. Thirlwall, 2011. "Balance of payments constrained growth models: history and overview," PSL Quarterly Review, Economia civile, vol. 64(259), pages 307-351.


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