Pol 266: Essay 3

Essay 3
Mailbox: Dept of Political Science, 358 Carman

Your answer should be typed, 1500-2250 words (5-7 double-space pp.), and include a source citation for any ‘outside’ examples you use in your analysis. No title pages, please: just put your name on the top of the first page. Answer the following questions in one continuous essay.  Due Thursday, December 19

1. Banerjee & Duflo note there are two basic approaches to developmental economics: the supply-wallah side, often associated with Sachs, and the demand-wallah side, associated with Easterly. Describe each of these sides, and describe how each would approach a specific problem in TWO of the following fields a) hunger; b) public health; c) education; d) family planning;.
2. I noted in class that the risk management techniques of the very poor are different from those with more resources, in particular with regard to [the lack of] buffers, barriers, and [lack of] flexibility. Discuss why each of these matters, and specific ways the poor may manage each of these issues.
3. Banerjee & Duflo don’t seem to spend much time discussing culture per se. What is gained by setting aside a deep discussion of culture? What is lost or missed?
4. What are some of the explanations offered as to why countries are poor? Do Banerjee & Duflo come to their own conclusions as to the poverty of nations, or do they avoid answering this question? Which explanation(s) make the most sense to you? Why?
5. Given Crick’s insistence on the necessity of flexibility, pragmatism, and compromise in politics, does this rule out any kind of ‘Grand Theory’ approach to politics or to political problems? Does this mean that the Banerjee & Duflo approach to policy is the only ‘political’ approach? Or is it the case that, in contending that policy can somehow evade or overcome politics, Banerjee & Duflo offer a kind of anti-political approach? Is there anything a Crick-based understanding of politics can contribute to policy of any sort?


About proftp

I teach political science and bioethics as an adjunct at a CUNY school.
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