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Development Economics and Method: A Quarter Century of ABCDE


  • Kaushik Basu
  • Andrew Foster


This, the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Annual Bank Conference on Development Economics (ABCDE) and also of the Washington Consensus, is a good time to take stock of development economics. What have we learned? What do we need to unlearn? What is the right methodology for development economics so that future knowledge is on firmer footing? These are important questions and this year’s ABCDE and this introduction is a stocktaking of where we stand on these questions. Development economics has come a long way from Adam Smith’s towering achievement in putting the discipline on a firm theoretical footing to some great strides in empirical methods in recent times. What we need to focus on now is the blending of analytics, statistics and intuition; and of using theory to integrate disparate empirical research.

Suggested Citation

  • Kaushik Basu & Andrew Foster, 2015. "Development Economics and Method: A Quarter Century of ABCDE," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 29(suppl_1), pages 2-8.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:29:y:2015:i:suppl_1:p:s2-s8.

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