Growth promotion or poverty reduction? Who cares?

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Not Dani Rodrik! Actually, he does care, but thinks that most good policies will achieve both ends:

Interventions aimed at helping the poor may still be the most effective way to raise average incomes. Poverty is naturally associated with market imperfections and incompleteness. The poor remain poor because they cannot borrow against future earnings to invest in education, skills, new crops, and entrepreneurial activities. They are cut off from economic activity because they are deprived of many collective goods (such as property rights, public safety, and infrastructure) and lack information about market opportunities. It is a standard tenet of economic theory that raising real average incomes requires interventions designed to close gaps between private and social costs. There will be a preponderance of such opportunities where there is a preponderance of poverty.

You can read the whole thing here - it's nearly five years old, so thanks to the MCA Monitor Blog for excavating it.

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