History, Historians and Development Policy: A Necessary Dialogue
C. A. Bayly, Vijayendra Rao, Simon Szreter and Michael Woolcock (Eds.)
158 x 240 mm
Year of Publishing
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Orient BlackSwan

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If history matters for understanding key development outcomes then surely historians should be active contributors to the debates informing these understandings. This volume integrates, for the first time, contributions from ten leading historians and seven policy advisors around the central development issues of social protection, public health, public education and natural resource management. How did certain ideas, and not others, gain traction in shaping particular policy responses? How did the content and effectiveness of these responses vary across different countries, and indeed within them? Achieving this is not merely a matter of seeking to ''know more'' about specific times, places and issues, but recognising the distinctive ways in which historians rigorously assemble, analyse and interpret diverse forms of evidence.

This book will appeal to students and scholars in development studies, history, international relations, politics and geography as well as policy makers and those working for or studying NGOs.

C.A. Bayly is Vere Harmsworth Professor of Imperial and Naval History, and Fellow of St Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge.

Vijayendra Rao is Lead Economist in the Development Research Group, World Bank.

Simon Szreter is Professor of History and Public Policy, and Fellow of St John’s College, University of Cambridge.

Michael Woolcock is Senior Social Scientist in the Development Research Group, World Bank.

List of tables and figures                                           
List of contributors                                                                
Preface and acknowledgements                                

PART 1: Overview of key issues

1  How and why history matters for development policy                 
Michael Woolcock, Simon Szreter and Vijayendra Rao

2  Indigenous and colonial origins of comparative economic development: the case of colonial India and Africa                          
C. A. Bayly

Commentary: History, time and temporality in development discourse                                                                                  
Uma Kothari

PART 2: Historical contributions to contemporary development policy issues

Social protection

3  Social security as a developmental institution? The relative efficacy of poor relief provisions under the English Old Poor Law
Richard M. Smith

4. Historical lessons about contemporary social welfare: Chinese puzzles and global challenges                                                                  
R. Bin Wong

Commentary: Why might history matter for development policy?
Ravi Kanbur

Public health

5  Health in India since independence                                                                       
Sunil S. Amrith

6  Healthcare policy for American Indians since the early twentieth century                                                                                                      
Stephen J. Kunitz

Commentary: Can historians assist development policy-making, or just highlight its faults?                                                                             
David Hall-Mathews

Public education

7  The end of literacy: the growth and measurement of British public education since the early nineteenth century                                 
David Vincent

8  The tools of transition: education and development in modern Southeast Asian history
Tim Harper

Commentary: Remembering the forgetting in schooling                               
Lant Pritchett

Natural resource management

9  Energy and natural resource dependency in Europe, 1600–1900
Paul Warde

10  Special rights in property: why modern African economies are dependent on mineral resources
Keith Breckenridge

Commentary: Natural resources and development—which histories matter?
Mick Moore

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