In this study, Angus Maddison explores the causes of the West’s economic growth over the last 2,000 years and contrasts it with the economic history of the rest of the world. Maddison explores the impact of Western conquest on the Americas and analyzes the indigenous and external forces that hindered advance in Asia and Africa. He debunks the notion that the Western ascension originated in the industrial revolution in England in the late eighteenth century. His unique analysis suggests that Western Europe overtook Chinese levels of per-capita income in the fourteenth century, in sharp contrast to the prevailing scholarship asserting that China was ahead of Europe until 1800.
Growth and Interaction in the World Economy provides guidance on the broad contours of development, which complements qualitative analysis that, on its own, cannot clearly identify the timing and scope of economic changes.
Angus Maddison is emeritus professor on the faculty of economics at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands and the author of numerous works on long-term economic growth, most recently The World Economy: Historical Statistics (OECD, 2004).
The Henry Wendt Lecture Series
Growth and Interaction in the World Economy was the 2001 Henry Wendt Lecture delivered at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C., on May 15, 2001. The Wendt Lecture is delivered annually by a scholar who has made major contributions to our understanding of the modern phenomenon of globalization and its consequences for social welfare, government policy, and the expansion of liberal political institutions.