JICA Ogata Research Institute

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JICA-RI Seminar: The World Bank Chief Economist Justin Lin Proposes a Fresh Approach to Rethink Development

March 14, 2012

On February 29, 2012, JICA-RI welcomed Justin Lin, Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of the World Bank, in Tokyo and organized a seminar titled “New Structural Economics” in which Mr. Lin spoke of a new way of reconsidering development he has invented.


For the Bank, Mr. Lin supervises economic research agendas and has expressed his opinions in countless books, international journals and volumes on topics like history and development.


In his seminar, Mr. Lin briefly explained the evolution of economic development theory, starting from the 1950s. Recent waves of economic crises have led economists worldwide as well as those at the World Bank to rethink development, and in January Mr. Lin has released a book New Structural Economics: A Framework for Rethinking Development and Policy. It introduces NSE to comprehend factors of economic structure and its transformation and presents fresh ideas for development policy. He shared some of the primary aspects of this approach at the event.


According to Mr. Lin, the main concept of NSE is that a market economy is a basis and foundation for development, but the government should play a facilitating role to assist structural transformation in the process. He pointed out that it is what all the successful countries like Japan, East Asian Tigers (South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore) and certainly now mainland China share in common. He said, “We need to propose people to pay attention to NSE in order to keep a balance of the role of a state and the role of a market. For development process, both need to be there as they work together.”


In an interview after the seminar, he also added, “JICA has a lot of experience helping developing countries and translating the insights learned from its success into those countries’ development policy. NSE is also to learn this lesson and I’d like to propose this new idea, in order to help other countries, which are still struggling from closing the gap and overcoming poverty... This is not a mainstream idea yet and we need to work together and promote it for the goal JICA wants to achieve, and that’s the same goal as I have.”


Justin Yifu Lin
Chief Economist, The World Bank

DayFebruary 29, 2012(Wed)

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