IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Grow Now/Clean Later, or the Pursuit of Sustainable Development?


  • David O’Connor


This paper is a contribution to the ongoing debate on the relationship between economic growth and the environment. Through a contrast of the experiences of two regional groupings of countries — East Asia and Eastern Europe — that have both experienced rapid industrialisation, it makes clear the importance of sound economic policy in encouraging efficient resource use. At the same, by contrasting the experiences of different East Asian countries, it demonstrates that economic policy is not sufficient. In the absence of reinforcing and enforceable environmental policies, rapid urban and industrial growth can cause severe environmental degradation.The paper addresses indirectly the question: what are the costs and benefits of delaying environmental expenditures until late in the development process as some of the high performing East Asian economies have done? It finds that those countries which invested early in environmental improvements experienced virtually no tradeoff in ... En comparant des pays appartenant à deux régions différentes mais qui se sont toutes deux industrialisées rapidement — l’Asie de l’Est et l’Europe de l’Est —, ce document contribue au débat actuel sur les relations entre croissance économique et environnement. Il démontre notamment l’importance de mesures économiquement saines pour favoriser l’utilisation efficiente des ressources. Mais il ressort également de la comparaison de plusieurs pays d’Asie de l’Est que des mesures économiques ne sauraient suffire. En effet, une croissance urbaine et industrielle rapide peut gravement porter atteinte à l’environnement si des politiques environnementales contraignantes et exécutoires ne sont pas adoptées.Le document traite donc en fait indirectement de la question suivante : quels sont les avantages et les inconvénients d’effectuer tardivement dans le processus de développement les dépenses de préservation de l’environnement, à la manière des économies hautement performantes d’Asie de ...

Suggested Citation

  • David O’Connor, 1996. "Grow Now/Clean Later, or the Pursuit of Sustainable Development?," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 111, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:devaaa:111-en

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oec:devaaa:111-en. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.