Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Interview on neo-structuralism

The World Economic Association conducted and interview with Esteban Pérez Caldentey, Miguel Torres and Romain Zivy, from Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), on a recently published book on neo-structuralism by Alicia Bárcena and Antonio Prado (eds.), Neo-structuralism and Heterodox Currents in Latin America and the Caribbean at the Beginning of the XXI Century. From the interview:
What is neo-structuralism?

Neo-structuralism is a modern version of the structuralist current of thought which flourished in Latin America and the Caribbean in the 1950s and 1960s based on the thinking of a group of economists mostly based in ECLAC. Famous structuralists include Celso Furtado (1920-2004); W. Arthur Lewis (1915-1991), Raúl Prebisch (1901-1986), Juan Noyola Vázquez (1922-1962); Aníbal Pinto Santa Cruz (1919-1996); Osvaldo Sunkel (1929-) and Ignácio Rangel (1914-1994). The development of structuralism also benefited substantially from the work of economists such as Nicholas Kaldor and Michael Kalecki.

Structuralist thought emerged as a response to the development problems of Latin America and the Caribbean and dissatisfaction with orthodox responses. For structuralists underdevelopment was not due to exogenous forces or shocks or to bad policy, but it was rather an intrinsic feature of Latin America and the Caribbean ingrained in its own social and economic structure. Hence structuralism was a way to conceptualize the Latin American and Caribbean reality. Structuralism ‘became a practice, before being a policy and a policy prior to becoming a theory.’
Read rest here.

PS: I had written on the evolution ECLAC's economics and structuralism here before.

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