bottom billion

1621 Words7 Pages
While providing short narratives from his professional life as a ex-director of development research at the World Bank and as a ex-advisor to the British government’s Commission on Africa, a former professor of Economics and Director of the Center for the Study of African Economies at Oxford University and now currently an advisory board for Academics Stand Against Poverty, Paul Collier’s, The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can be Done About it, describes that there’s an increasingly growing gap between those countries that are under extreme poverty and those that are developing or developed. The author calls those fifty-eight countries that are under the state of extreme poverty “The Bottom Billion.” How did these countries put themselves halfway in their graves? and, How do they get themselves out? are the looming questions that are offered. Collier proposes answers for these questions often referring to Jeffrey Sachs’ precedent finding as well as using his own scholarly writings to explain why the country is in their circumstance and what kind of interventions would need to be done.
Collier’s focal point is on the poorest bottom billion people on the globe whom suffer from extreme poverty. The concentration of which the fifty-eight countries are situated in are Africa and some in Central Asia. He claims that poverty itself is not a trap. Rather, Collier supposes that their condition is created and continual by one or a combination of four development traps: 1) a conflict trap, 2) a natural resources trap, 3) the trap of being landlocked with bad neighbors, and 4) poor governance trap. These traps are causing what Collier describes as the growing gap a “divergence,” a byproduct of globalization...

... middle of paper ...

... extreme poverty and in how the other spectrum of the world can reach out and find answers for the lives of the world’s most poverty stricken humans must see this book. Collier’s answer to that question is not as simple as Jeffrey Sachs’, who firmly suggests to increasing proper aid as the probable solution. Instead, Collier demonstrates a moderate answer that lies in the middle which he has stated may contain gray areas but, nonetheless an answer where aid, international charters, and trade policies all have responsibilities in the development of these countries. Nevertheless, The Bottom Billion is a good introduction to the topic of development economics as it provides a general understanding of reasons why certain countries, specifically the bottom billion, are being excluded from the world as external forces such as globalization is bringing together the rest.
Open Document