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Human Geography Essay

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Submitted By angelfacebubb
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Many economists have previously provided their own interpretation about the relationship between economic structure and levels of prosperity. One example was W.W Rostow, who proposed the model of stage development. While this model has become a commonly held view of economic development, it does not always hold true for underdeveloped nations. When taking into account the recent economic development of a country in the Global South, such as Colombia, it becomes clear that Rostow’s theory is linear, geographical, and pro-capitalist model. The first flawed aspect of the model is the fact that it is linear – it assumes that “all regions go through the same stages in a particular order towards high mass consumption” (Knox et al, 313). In contrast to these assumptions, the economic development of Colombia has been anything but linear, given its position as an underdeveloped nation. Rostow’s theory suggests that “in order for a country to move from a traditional society to a society that is ‘taking off’, it must first establish the preconditions for takeoff” (Knox et al, 314). At this stage, a country should “begin to heavily invest in developing a manufacturing sector” (Knox et al, 314) as it moves away from an agricultural based economy. While this may prove to be true for countries such as the United States and Canada, the same cannot be said for Colombia. In fact, it can be argued that Colombia simply skipped this second stage of Rostow’s model. Columbia is an economy that “currently has 18% of its labour force in agriculture, which continues to be the chief economic activity in the country” (2014 Index of Economic Freedom). This industry is a main reason for its success in growing its famous commodity – coffee, as well as bananas and cotton. The exposure of these commodities to international trade has “led to the country experiencing rapid growth without the need...

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