Book

Bringing in the Future

William Ascher

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780226029160
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226029184 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226029184.001.0001
Bringing in the Future

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  • Economic Development and Growth

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Humans are plagued by shortsighted thinking, preferring to put off work on complex, deep-seated, or difficult problems in favor of quick-fix solutions to immediate needs. When short-term thinking is applied to economic development, especially in fragile nations, the results—corruption, waste, and faulty planning—are often disastrous. This book draws on the latest research from psychology, economics, institutional design, and legal theory to suggest strategies to overcome powerful obstacles to long-term planning in developing countries. Drawing on cases from Africa, Asia, and Latin America, the book applies strategies such as the creation and scheduling of tangible and intangible rewards, cognitive exercises to increase the understanding of longer-term consequences, self-restraint mechanisms to protect long-term commitments and enhance credibility, and restructuring policy-making processes to permit greater influence of long-term considerations. The book features theoretically informed research findings and policy examples, and shows how the vagaries of human behavior affect international development.

Keywords: short-term thinking; economic development; fragile nations; corruption; waste; institutional design; legal theory; long-term planning; developing countries; self-restraint mechanisms

Book.  342 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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Analytic Exercises in Bringing in the Future

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