The United Nations recognizes 49 countries as least developed --the low-income countries suffering most from structural handicaps to growth and thus deserving special treatment from the international community. Patrick Guillaumont has chaired the group that identifies least developed countries (LDCs) at the UN Committee for Development Policy for the past ten years. In this book, he explores the meaning of least developed and the rationale for the LDC category. The book presents a history of the category and its conceptual and empirical grounds in growth ecomics. It assesses the two main criteria of structural handicaps: a human assets index and an ecomic vulnerability index. It considers how they can be aggregated in a structural handicap index to refine the identification of the LDCs and whether they could be combined with income per capita in a synthetic least likely to develop index. Through its examination of the LDC category, this book explains why some low-income countries seem to have been caught in a poverty trap while some others have escaped.
Patrick Guillaumont is professor emeritus at the University of Auvergne in France and president of the Foundation for Studies and Research on International Development (FERDI).
Date of Publication
Economics: Professional & General
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