n AfricaGrowth Agenda - Economics and development paradigms in transition

Volume 17 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1811-5187


Because of the perceivable decay of neoliberalism or monetarism as mainstream economics and its prescriptive development policy, the old concept of paradigm is nowadays becoming a fashionable word in academic campuses and political spheres. It is a sound voice that transmits the idea of the erudition of anyone who pronounces it or write about it. Curiously, it is too little what it says about its meaning and good usage, particularly, when heterodox economists insistently allude to the need for a «paradigm shift». With the aim of stripping the concept of its vagueness banner, this article attempts to explain what paradigm and paradigm shift mean looking, by way of illustration, at the transition of three magnificent development paradigms in economic science over the last hundred years. It also gives a brief account of their strengths and weaknesses to face crucial development problems, threats, and challenges in the twenty-first century.

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