Why Nations Fail by Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson
Subtitled The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty, Why Nations Fail presents the theory that the reason for the great disparity of wealth worldwide lies in a country's political institutions. The book is co-authored by Daron Acemoglu (an M.I.T economist) and James A. Robinson (a Harvard political scientist).
Reviewer: Paul Collier
"Mostly, such people write only for other academics. In this book, they have done you the courtesy of writing a book that while at the intellectual cutting edge is not just readable but engrossing. This alone would be reason to take notice: a vital topic, top scholars, and a well-written book."
Reviewer: Warren Bass
"“Why Nations Fail” isn’t perfect. The basic taxonomy of inclusive vs. extractive starts to get repetitive....Acemoglu and Robinson have run the risks of ambition, and cheerfully so. For a book about the dismal science and some dismal plights, “Why Nations Fail” is a surprisingly captivating read."
Reviewer: Jared Diamond
"Whereas most writing by academic economists is incomprehensible to the lay public, Acemoglu and Robinson have written this book so that it can be understood and enjoyed by all of us who aren’t economists...Why Nations Fail should be required reading for politicians and anyone concerned with economic development."
Reviewer: Martin Wolf
"This is an intellectually rich book that develops an important thesis with verve. It should be widely read. But it is not the last word on the hugely important questions it raises. Simplification is necessary in research. But it has limitations in providing a grand theory of everything."
Reviewer: William Easterly
"Yet the reader of this ebullient narrative is inclined to forgive such excesses and even overlook the fact that the book only really illustrates the authors' theories rather than proving them. "Why Nations Fail" is a vital work for these times, directing our attention to the big picture regarding the poverty and prosperity of nations. It an eloquent and powerful statement of the long-run success of democratic capitalism at a time when it is under attack."