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Shanta: Thanks so much for your comment. You are of course the father of the Africa Can Blog, so your thoughts and questions are particularly welcome - we have big shoes to fill here!! 

Why haven't African policy-makers followed this strategy? Three points: (1) in many cases they have - or have tried to - witness TASAF in Tanzania. (2) In many others, they haven't, because states do get captured by powerful interest groups. The importance of political economy obstacles to pro-poor growth - ranging from outright corruption to less blatant forms of misgovernment - is something you have often rightly emphasized in the past.  And it is probably where the bulk of the effort must go.  (3) Less important, but perhaps easier - is the role of new knowledge and information sharing - so that policymakers learn new ways of doing things.