Three central propositions that encapsulate how thinking needs to change:
- The development problem we now face is not that of the past forty years: it is not the five billion people of the developing world and the Millennium Development Goals that track their progress. It is a much more focused problem of around a billion people in countries that are stuck. This is the problem we are going to have to tackle, and if we stick with present efforts, it is likely to be intractable even as the dashboard indicators of world poverty get better and better.
- Within the societies of the bottom billion there is an intense struggle between brave people who are trying to achieve change and powerful groups who oppose them. The politics of the bottom billion is not the bland and sedate process of the rich democracies but rather a dangerous contest between moral extremes. The struggle for the future of the bottom billion is not a contest between an evil rich world and a noble poor world. It is within the societies of the bottom billion, and to date we have largely been bystanders.
- We do not need to be bystanders. Our support for change can be decisive. But we will need not just a more intelligent approach to aid but complementary actions using instruments that have not conventionally been part of the development armory: trade policies, security strategies, changes in our laws, and new international charters.
We need to narrow the target and broaden the instruments.
-- "The Bottom Billion" by Paul Collier, p. 192
Other quotes from The Bottom Billion:
- Voting with your feet
- Five international charters
- Public inaction
- Reformers do not have it easy
- Nine strategies for landlocked countries
- The role of economic growth