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Understanding Economic Growth: Review Article of Why Economies Grow


  • Andrew Sharpe



The question of why economies grow has been at the heart of economic inquiry since Adam Smith. The final article is a review of the recent book Why Economies Grow: The Forces That Shape Prosperity and How to Get Them Working Again by Jeff Madrick. He argues that the growth of markets through trade, colonization, and domestic expansion was the predominate factor in Western economic development. While technological innovation is necessary to growth, it is as much a consequence of economic opportunity as it is a cause, and perhaps even more a follower of economic growth than a leader.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Sharpe, 2004. "Understanding Economic Growth: Review Article of Why Economies Grow," International Productivity Monitor, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, vol. 8, pages 81-84, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:sls:ipmsls:v:8:y:2004:8

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    More about this item


    Technological Change; Growth; Productivity Growth; 19th Century Economic Growth; Productivity Slowdown; Post-1973; Prosperity;

    JEL classification:

    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General


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