The West and the Rest in the World Economy:1000-2030 Maddisonian and Malthusian Interpretations by Angus Maddison

Angus Maddison, UNU-MERIT

Summary: This paper analyses the forces determining per capita income levels of nations over the past millennium and the prospects to 2030. In the year 1000, Asian countries were in the lead. By 1820, per capita GDP in western Europe and the US was twice the Asian average. The divergence had grown much bigger by 1950, but by the 1970s, several Asian countries-Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Hong and Singapore had achieved considerable catch-up. Since then, there has been a major surge in China and the beginning of a similar phenomon in India. As a result, the Asian share of world income has risen steadily and by 2030, will be fairly close to what it was in 1820. I conclude by comparing my analysis with the Malthusian interpretation of Oded Galor.

About the speaker
Professor Angus Maddison has had a long and distinguished career as an academic researcher in the area of long term economic growth. For the last 30 years, he has been based at the Faculty of Economics, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, where he is "Emeritus Professor of Economics." He is a former head of the Economics devision of OECD. At UNU-MERIT Professor Maddison will undertake research on the measurement of economic performance, technology levels, growth and productivity in a comparative perspective as part of the Institute's research theme on technology, growth and development.

Venue: Conference room, 4th floor, UNU-MERIT, Keizer Karelplein 19, Maastricht

Date: 25 November 2008

Time: 12:00 - 13:00