Development and the crisis

Debate Moderator(s): 

The crisis, which started in North Atlantic economies, has spread to the emerging and developing world at an unexpectedly abrupt pace and in unforeseen ways. How are the economic effects different in these nations and how should their governments react? What role should the G20 play?
This is one of six themes that make up Vox's Global Crisis Debate. In this initiative, partnered with the UK government to collect the views of economists from around the world on what we should do to fix the global economy. The analysis and proposals that appeared on Vox's "Global Crisis Debate" page fed directly into the UK's preparation for the summit of world leaders in London in April. This debate was featured on the UK government's own web site,

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Lead Commentaries

Peter Drysdale, Hadi Soesastro , 07 April 2009

This column says the G20 summit was a remarkable event as leaders crafted a coherent set of strategies to address the crisis. The Asian participants emerged as a constructive force, agreeing to expand their role in IMF funding and governance, ease the trade credit bottleneck, and advocate the standstill on trade barriers.

L Alan Winters , 02 April 2009

The crisis, started by rich nations, is now harming developing nations. In this column, Alan Winters – one of the world’s leading trade and development economists and now chief economist of the UK’s Department for International Development – argues that Summit commitments show that development and developing countries are at the heart of G20 leaders’ vision for the twenty-first century.

Guillermo Calvo , 23 March 2009

Fiscal stimulus and financial regulation cannot restore credit availability. This column argues that we need a global lender of last resort to restore liquidity. In the short run, it presses for large liquidity facilities to protect emerging market economies from the risk of damaging sudden stops of capital inflows.

Peter Draper , 16 March 2009

The gathering economic crisis has induced major economic problems for African countries. This column highlights several key priorities for (South) African representatives to take into the London Summit, including maintaining access to finance, open markets and redoubling African economic reform efforts.

Francisco Rodríguez , 23 February 2009

The development theme in the Global Crisis Debate has elicited many important and novel contributions on what the crisis means for the developing world and how developing nations should react. This column provides a synthesis and commentary of the key proposals.

Ricardo Hausmann , 17 February 2009

A lot of effort has been put into discussing issues such as global imbalances and the voting rights at the international financial institutions, but too little effort has been dedicated to thinking about what these institutions should do in the context of the current global crisis. Global and regional international institutions need to step up to a much bigger role than is currently envisioned. If this strategy is successful, it will lead to a more balanced and sustainable global recovery.

Jeffry Frieden , 02 February 2009

If the crisis turns into a new Great Depression, it will most likely be due to a breakdown of cooperation among the major economies. But sustaining international cooperation requires domestic support; ignoring the demands of poor and middle-class citizens for relief will inflame more extreme anti-globalisation views, making international cooperation much more difficult.

Dani Rodrik , 28 January 2009

The global crisis is an opportunity for developing nations to project their interests in multilateral institutions, and gain influence in shaping economic globalisation. To make the best of this outcome, developing nations need a good sense of their interests and priorities, but also to recognize that having a greater say entails acceptance of greater responsibilities.