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Industrial Policy for the Twenty-First Century

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Faculty Research Working Papers Series

Industrial Policy for the Twenty-First Century Dani Rodrik November 2004 RWP04-047

The views expressed in the KSG Faculty Research Working Paper Series are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the John F. Kennedy School of Government or Harvard University. Copyright belongs to the author(s). Papers may be downloaded for personal use only.

INDUSTRIAL POLICY FOR THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY*

Dani Rodrik Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government 79 Kennedy Street Cambridge, MA 02138 (617) 495-9454 Fax: (617) 496-5747 E-mail: dani_rodrik@harvard.edu http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/rodrik/ This version September 2004

* This paper has been prepared for UNIDO. I am grateful to Francisco Sercovich for his guidance. I am also grateful to Robert Lawrence, Lant Pritchett, Andres Rodriguez-Clare, Andres Velasco, and especially Ricardo Hausmann and Roberto Unger for conversations over the last few years that led to the development of these ideas. None of these individuals should be held responsible for the views expressed here. I also thank Magali Junowicz for expert research assistance.

I. Introduction Once upon a time, economists believed the developing world was full of market failures, and the only way in which poor countries could escape from their poverty traps was through forceful government interventions. Then there came a time when economists started to believe government failure was by far the bigger evil, and that the best thing that government could do was to give up any pretense of steering the economy. Reality has not been kind to either set of expectations. Import substitution, planning, and state ownership did produce some successes, but where they got entrenched and ossified over time, they led to colossal failures and crises. Economic liberalization and opening up benefited...

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