This course explores the role of microfinance in economic development. It will discuss how poor people in poor countries use financial services such as credit and savings; the history and practice of delivering such services; what is known about their contribution to development; and how stories and statistical studies shape public perceptions of microfinance.
Pathways Out of Rural Poverty; Or, Food Prices, Poverty and Economic Development, Stanford University (Syllabus)
This course will review the determinants of rural poverty and examine the historical pathways that have led the rural poor out of poverty. A policy perspective will be taken on all three levels of analytical interest: the macro level, the sectoral level, and the household level.
Since 2004, the Center for Global Development has been collecting success stories in global health – remarkable cases in which large-scale efforts to improve health in developing countries have succeeded – and releasing them in the book Millions Saved: Case Studies in Global Health (now printed in two editions, with a third edition expected in 2015).
This module will examine the leading issues related to capital flows between the developed and developing worlds. It will cover the various types of official and private finance as well as the institutions and policies designed to manage and promote these flows. It begins by considering development assistance from both the recipient and donor perspectives, as well as the changing roles of the IMF and the multilateral development banks. In the second half, it explores the key issues in debt, private investment, and the financial sector.
This course examines economic growth and other development indicators around the world since 1965, with some reference to broad patterns since 1820, while also exploring the relationship between growth, poverty, and equity. Other topics will include the developing-country debt crisis and the financial crises that affected several emerging markets in the late 1990s.
This module will explore some of the research on the key issues of growth and poverty reduction in sub-Saharan Africa. It will examine a variety of empirical findings on these topics to better understand why Africa and the international agencies tasked to promote development have had so little success in the post-independence era. The course emphasizes international financial relations and institutions.
Why is Africa poor? What, if anything, can the West do about it? No course can answer these questions in full, but one can get started on the (hopefully lifelong) learning. Students will be exposed to the major and the not‐so-major debates in aid and development. They will discuss the conventional and less conventional theories of poverty, growth, war, and good governance, and why there is so much or so little of it in Africa. The aim is to help students think critically about these debates and their possible role in the problem and solutions.