Entrepreneurship and Economic Development

Entrepreneurship and Economic Development is a major research area of CFR's Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy initiative. The business environment necessary for entrepreneurship to flourish is closely related to the political environment needed for stable democracy. Problems such as capricious state authority, corruption, and poor education hinder both private enterprise and democratic governance. Entrepreneurship itself can also serve as a potent antidote to excessive state authority. However, the correlation between economic and political freedom is far from exact. The Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy initiative aims to understand how best to promote entrepreneurship and its connection to broader economic growth and democracy. One priority is womenís roles as entrepreneurs and contributions to economic development, especially in post-conflict settings.

Please see below for relevant publications.

Rio's Unsustainable Nonsense

Author: Jagdish N. Bhagwati
Project Syndicate

Jagdish Bhagwati laments the choice by delegates at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development to offer platitudes instead of realistic solutions.

See more in Economic Development; Global

The Economic Roots of the Arab Spring

Speaker: Hernando de Soto
Presider: Isobel Coleman

Speaker

Hernando de Soto, President of the Institute for Liberty and Democracy, which advises heads of state and governments worldwide; Author, The Other Path: The Invisible Revolution in the Third World and The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else

Presider

Isobel Coleman, Senior Fellow and Director of the Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy Initiative, Council on Foreign Relations

See more in Middle East and North Africa; Poverty; Political Movements and Protests

Building Small Business Amid Great Challenge: Entrepreneurship in Fragile States (Audio)

Speaker: Shari Berenbach
Presider: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

Shari Berenbach, director of the Microenterprise Development Office at USAID, details how the agency promotes entrepreneurship in conflict and developing regions by empowering and encouraging women to manage their own small- and medium-sized businesses.

This meeting was part of the Roundtable Series on Entrepreneurs and Market Linkages.

See more in Global; Fragile or Failed States; Entrepreneurship

Why Nations Fail (Audio)

Speaker: Daron Acemoglu
Presider: Isobel Coleman

In his new book Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty, Daron Acemoglu looks at why some nations prosper and why some fail. He concludes that it depends on whether institutions are pluralistic and inclusive or extractive and autocratic.

See more in Global; Fragile or Failed States

Can China Change?

Minxin Pei interviewed by Christopher Alessi

China faces growing internal and external calls for economic and political reforms. Expert Minxin Pei looks at the political transition under way and discusses prospects for change.

See more in China; Economic Development; Democratization