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Do We Really Know Why the Poorest Countries are Failing?: A Study of Collier’s The Bottom Billion – Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can Be Done About it
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Social Sciences.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

In this deductive study, Paul Collier’s claims regarding poverty are tested. Collier claims in The Bottom Billion – Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can Be Done About it (2008) that the poorest 58 countries today are poor because they are stuck in one or several traps. The traps being: “The Conflict Trap”, “The Natural Resource Trap”, “Landlocked with Bad Neighbors” and “Bad Governance in a Small Country”. In this paper, Collier’s study is being redone. A quantitative approach is used in which statistical data are collected and analyzed. The study indicates that although these four traps are common in poor countries, they are not as common as Collier claims them to be. His claims can hence not be completely confirmed by this study. Caution is therefore necessary if his policy advices are used as inspiration when constructing development policies. Moreover, this study demonstrates the importance of using well-defined proxies and definitions, as well as informing the reader about which definitions that are used in the study.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 83 p.
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-30859OAI: diva2:669073
Subject / course
Peace and development
Educational program
International Social Sciences Programme, specialization Global Studies, 180 credits
Available from: 2014-01-14 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2016-02-22Bibliographically approved

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