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  • Book
  • © 2018

Botswana – A Modern Economic History

An African Diamond in the Rough

Palgrave Macmillan
  • Highlights lessons from Botswana’s economic history that are relevant for understanding historical as well as contemporary experiences of economic growth and (lacking) structural transformation in natural resource abundant and dependent countries

  • Provides an in-depth study identifying drivers of inequality taking place during the diamond-led economy

  • Considers consequences of colonial economic strategies including taxes and government transfers

  • Discusses what could happen when the diamonds run out and the window of opportunity has not been used to create sustainable economic development

Part of the book series: Palgrave Studies in Economic History (PEHS)

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eBook USD 119.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-319-73144-5
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book USD 159.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 159.99
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Table of contents (7 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xv
  2. Part 1

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 1-1
    2. An African Diamond in the Rough

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 3-24
    3. Precolonial Economy and Society, c. 1850–1930

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 25-48
  3. Part 2

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 49-49
    2. Colonial Policies and the Cattle Economy, c. 1930–1975

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 51-83
  4. Part 3

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 85-85
    2. Growth, Incomes, and Development, c. 1940–Present

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 87-128
    3. Trapped by Diamonds, c. 1975–Present

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 129-164
    4. Inequality of Incomes and Opportunity, c. 1920–Present

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 165-208
  5. Part 4

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 209-209
    2. Conclusion

      • Ellen Hillbom, Jutta Bolt
      Pages 211-224
  6. Back Matter

    Pages 225-235

About this book

“Many people have tried to draw lessons from Botswana’s apparent economic success, and

linked it to unique features of the country’s history. In this book, Bolt and Hillbom have used

detailed historical research to tell the story of that success, and suggest that it is perhaps not

so unique after all. At the same time, they have shown how detailed case studies can contribute

to a more nuanced and complete understanding of African economic development since the

nineteenth century.”

 Leigh Gardner, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK

 

“With their construction of long-term income inequality trends Hillbom and Bolt provide new

and interesting evidence demonstrating that the gap between rich and poor, so evident in

Botswana today, first began to show up in the 1940s.”

 Neil Parsons, University of Botswana

 

Together with Mauritius, Botswana is often categorized as one of two growth miracles in

sub-Saharan Africa. Due to its spectacular long-run economic performance and impressive

social development, it has been termed both an economic success story and a developmental

state. While there is uniqueness in the Botswana experience, several aspects of the country’s

opportunities and challenges are of a more general nature. Throughout its history, Botswana has

been both blessed and hindered by its natural resource abundance and dependency, which have

influenced growth periods, opportunities for economic diversification, strategies for sustainable

economic and social development, and the distribution of incomes and opportunities.

Through a political economy framework, Hillbom and Bolt provide an updated understanding

of an African success story.

 

Ellen Hillbom is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economic History, Lund

University, Sweden.

 

Jutta Bolt is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economic History, Lund University,

Sweden and affiliated with the University of Groningen, the Netherlands.

 

Keywords

  • Sustainable economic development
  • Economic diversification
  • Growth miracle
  • Pre-colonial Economy and Society
  • Colonial Policies
  • Income Inequality
  • Economic History of Botswana
  • African economic history
  • cattle economy
  • natural resource curse
  • African economic growth
  • Drivers of Inequality
  • Colonial Economic Strategies

Authors and Affiliations

  • University of Lund, Lund, Sweden

    Ellen Hillbom

  • Lund University, Lund, Sweden

    Jutta Bolt

About the authors

Ellen Hillbom is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economic History, Lund University, Sweden. Her research focuses on Southern and Eastern Africa and addresses both historical and contemporary cases of agricultural and structural transformation, long-term inequality trends, natural resource dependency, property rights regimes governing agricultural resources, and smallholder production and commercialization.

Jutta Bolt is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economic History, Lund University, Sweden and affiliated with the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. Her research focuses on understanding long-term comparative economic development patterns, with a special focus on Africa. Current research projects include demographic developments, long-term agricultural productivity and the historical origins of present-day income inequality. In addition she works in the Maddison Project measuring long-run global economic development.

Bibliographic Information

Buying options

eBook USD 119.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-319-73144-5
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book USD 159.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 159.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)