When Markets Fail - Social Policy in Emerging Market Economies

The sweeping political and economic changes of the past decade – including the spread of democracy, pro-market policies, and economic globalization – have dramatically increased the demand in developing countries for social programs such as unemployment compensation, pensions, and income supplements for the poor. This book examines how emerging market economies on Eastern Europe, Latin America, North Africa, and the Middle East are shaping their social policies in response to these changes.

by Ethan Kapstein
Last Updated: 23 Jul 2013

This book presents some evidence that a global convergence in social policies may be taking place as Europe slowly makes its welfare provisions less generous. Thus causing emerging market economies to be under increasing demographic and political pressure to make their social welfare systems more comprehensive. This book also examines the vital role that organizations such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Asian Development Bank can play in fostering effective social services in developing economies.

Economic globalization and political liberalization have produced many economic winners around the world, but the forces have created many losers as well. The author addresses the problem of how governments in developing countries have responded to the plight of those losers through social policy. The success of these policies, however, remains sharply contested, as is their role on helping to achieve meaningful poverty reduction. This is a ‘must-read’ for anyone interested in economic liberalization and its consequences for the developing worlds.

Russel Sage Foundation, 2002

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