Accepted paper:

No global south in economic development: the health industry case


Smita Srinivas (The Open University)

Paper short abstract:

Using a historical, comparative approach focused on technological advance, and which draws on evolutionary, institutional analysis of the health industry, its sub-sector capabilities, and local applications, this paper addresses challenges to ideas of a cohesive post-colonial global south.

Paper long abstract:

Colonisation has had a significant influence on economic development experience and economic analysis. Yet, independent countries have distinct industrial and technological features. This paper argues for a comparative evolutionary, institutional approach to economic development with industry-level analysis focused on uneven and dynamic local capabilities. The health industry is a good test case to probe this assertion, historically playing a critical industrial and social policy role. This industry, with distinct local product and process capabilities, has been unevenly developed to address local health needs across post-colonial contexts by states, local firms, and other stakeholders. Using Asian, African, and Latin American health industry cases from secondary data, the paper addresses the importance of differentiating national autonomy and domestic development capability by industry-level analysis. This allows economic development theories to move away from the requirement of a cohesive post-colonial global south.

panel A1
Decolonising health research for development