Dynamic Capacity Development: What Africa Can Learn from Industrial Policy Formulation in East Asia

Izumi Ohno and Kenichi Ohno

in Good Growth and Governance in Africa

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199698561
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738142 | DOI:

Series: Initiative for Policy Dialogue

Dynamic Capacity Development: What Africa Can Learn from Industrial Policy Formulation in East Asia

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The essence of East Asian development experience should be sought in the methodology of policy formulation rather than individual policy measures whose applicability differs greatly across countries. East Asia approaches development as a joint process of political and economic factors. Policy formulation in East Asia is characterized by real-sector pragmatism, goal orientation, and aspiration for building the country's unique strength rather than removing general negatives. The problem of weak policy capability is overcome through focused hands-on endeavor to achieve concrete objectives, which we call dynamic capacity development, rather than trying to improve governance scores generally vis-à-vis the global standard. These features are sharply distinct from the dominant development thinking of Western donors which emphasize good governance and an early adoption of policies and institutions that copy international best practices. Examples of dynamic capacity development are presented, and four entry points for bringing this methodology to Africa are suggested.

Keywords: East Asia; Africa; industrialization; development policy; capacity development; ODA

Chapter.  10685 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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