Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
The Next Convergence

The Next Convergence

The Future of Economic Growth in a Multispeed World

Michael Spence




Trade Paperback

A Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book for 2011

With the British Industrial Revolution, part of the world's population started to experience extraordinary economic growth—leading to enormous gaps in wealth and living standards between the industrialized West and the rest of the world. This pattern of divergence reversed after World War II, and now we are midway through a century of high and accelerating growth in the developing world and a new convergence with the advanced countries—a trend that is set to reshape the world.

Michael Spence, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, explains what happened to cause this dramatic shift in the prospects of the five billion people who live in developing countries. The growth rates are extraordinary, and continuing them presents unprecedented challenges in governance, international coordination, and ecological sustainability. The implications for those living in the advanced countries are great but little understood.

Spence clearly and boldly describes what's at stake for all of us as he looks ahead to how the global economy will develop over the next fifty years. The Next Convergence is certain to spark a heated debate how best to move forward in the post-crisis period and reset the balance between national and international economic interests, and short-term fixes and long-term sustainability.


As the global economy emerged in the post war period, the colonial system disappeared. Old colonies became new countries, some of them with very odd shapes and geographical positions. With no history of self-governance as nation states, they struggled...


Praise for The Next Convergence

“Impressive...Spence offers deep insights with a winning, refreshing humility rarely seen in Nobel Prize-winning economists.” —The Washington Post

“An intelligent, rational, an dhumane book about the great economic event of our era...Anyone seeking a commonsense guide to the transformation underway need look no further.” —Financial Times (London)

“Cogent, comprehensive, and compelling...Especially trenchant and timely.” —The Huffington Post

“Rarely does one find a book that is so powerful in its analysis, timely in its topic, relevant in its thinking, and clear in its exposition.... This is by far the best book I have seen on today's historical growth transformation.” —Mohamed A. El-Erian, author of When Markets Collide

“Fascinating...Having Spence as a brilliant guide, intimate with both the research and policy frontiers, is a perfect way to get up to speed.... Engaging, intellectual treatments like this one will surely make progress easier.” —Science

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Michael Spence

Michael Spence is a Professor of Economics at the Stern School of Business at New York University, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, and was the chairman of the independent Commission on Growth and Development. Winner of the Nobel 2001 Prize in Economic Sciences, he lives in California and Italy.

Michael Spence

© Anne Knudsen Photography

Michael Spence

From the Publisher


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