Managing Change in the Twenty First Century
9. Development and institutions in Asia: pertinent lessons This book presents an analysis and interpretation of industrialization and development in Asia: in particular, India, China, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan. These countries have been widely seen as economic success stories during the post-war era. Japan’s ‘economic miracle’ commenced in the 1950s as it quickly regained its place among the developed nations after the devastation of World War II and challenged the United States for global economic leadership in the 1980s, although it has generally stagnated since its economic bubble burst in 1989. During the 1960s, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan commenced rapid industrialization drives; China and Malaysia followed suit in the 1980s; and India has made considerable progress over the last two decades. An analysis of the Asian experience, therefore, should be quite instructive for understanding the dynamics of development in the contemporary world. Most importantly, the rise of Asia strongly indicates that we need to look at development from a somewhat different perspective than the emphasis of traditional analyses. The 1980s witnessed the growth of a consensus among many development agencies and Western governments that development was best promoted by laissez-faire policies and limited government. This reflected the growing economic problems both in the communist command economies and in the many developing nations that had tried to promote import-substitution industrialization. This was ironic, however, because at the same time there was growing recognition of the rapid development that was occurring in many Asian countries with highly interventionist...
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