Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa Hardcover – Mar 17 2009
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Praise for Dead Aid
“Moyo is right to raise her voice, and she should be heard if African nations and other poor countries are to move in the right direction.” —Jagdish Bhagwati, Foreign Affairs
“Moyo presents a refreshing view.” —Lisa Miller, Newsweek
“A tightly argued brief . . . Vivid.” —Matthew Rees, The Wall Street Journal
“An incendiary new book . . . Here is a refreshing voice . . . What makes Dead Aid so powerful is that it’s a double-barrelled shotgun of a book. With the first barrel, Moyo demolishes all the most cherished myths about aid being a good thing. But with the second, crucially, she goes on to explain what the West could be doing instead.” —Christopher Hart, The Daily Mail
“Dambisa Moyo is to aid what Ayaan Hirsi Ali is to Islam. Here is an African woman, articulate, smart, glamorous, delivering a message of brazen political incorrectness: cut aid to Africa. Aid, she argues, has not merely failed to work; it has compounded Africa’s problems. Moyo cannot be dismissed as a crank . . . She catalogues evidence, both statistical and anecdotal . . . The core of her argument is that there is a better alternative [and it deserves] to be taken seriously.” —Paul Collier, The Independent
“The wisdom contained here—if absorbed by African and global policymakers—will turn this chronically depressed continent into an inspiring miracle of dazzling economic growth.” —STEVE FORBES, President and Chief Executive Officer of Forbes and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes magazine
“Dambisa Moyo makes a compelling case for a new approach in Africa. Her message is that Africa’s time is now. It is time for Africans to assume full control over their economic and political destiny. Africans should grasp the many means and opportunities available to them for improving the quality of life. Dambisa is hard—perhaps too hard—on the role of aid. But her central point is indisputable. The determination of Africans, and genuine partnership between Africa and the rest of the world, is the basis for growth and development.” —KOFI ANNAN, former Secretary-General of the United Nations
“Dead Aid is an important book . . . at the very least, [it] provides a first step towards changing how America, and the world, thinks about how to help Africa.” —Heather Wilhelm, Real Clear World
“Dead Aid is a wonderfully liberating book.” —Doug Bandow, The Washington Times
“[Moyo’s] book offers an analytical, researched approach to restoring life and sufficiency in this developing continent. Dead Aid calls for a new way of thinking . . . After unraveling the myth created by many policymakers and celebrities that Africa simply needs more charity, Moyo poses a series of hopeful alternatives . . . Moyo speaks with both cultural and academic authority, unpacking the full nature of poverty and its regional impact. She unveils the sobering reality that $1 trillion in financial aid has not helped, but rather hindered African economies and their ability to grow into sustainable markets. This book offers a fresh insight into the plight of poverty and a vision for developmental change—the kind of change that could help millions.” —Curt Devine, Relevant
“Dambisa Moyo’s book Dead Aid is a timely book which brings forth what we have been thinking about Western aid, but did not dare to speak out . . . Moyo has shown brilliantly that Western aid, governmental or non-governmental, couldn’t help Africa in regard to transforming to a better form of social organization, by which innovation and technological development become possible . . . Moyo shows the strong correlation between increasing aid dependency, corruption and the nature of government structures in many African countries . . . In general Moyo’s book is a very challenging book, and addresses our problems. It confronts those aid gurus, like Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, who manipulate the African leaders with their neo-liberal agendas. It is a very good starting point for further discussion, and can contribute to eliminating confusing ideas.” —Fekadu Bekele, Merkato Blog, Nazret.com
“A radical, counterintuitive solution to the continent’s economic problems . . . [Moyo] is unequivocal, not to mention convincing.” —Jason Zasky, Failure Magazine
“The evidence assessing the impact of aid on economic growth (or the lack thereof) is comprehensive and convincing.” —Apoorva Shah, Hoover Institution, Stanford University
“Moyo’s indictment of the past 50 years of aid-giving is compelling . . . [She] has written a well-informed book, and her passionate commitment to improving Africa’s fortunes drips from every page.” —Jonathan Wright, Geographical
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Top Customer Reviews
The central argument is that aid is bad for Africa, and in fact, is the reason that Africa is caught in a poverty trap. It's an interesting argument, and one that I was ready to be convinced of, but I felt that Moyo didn't provide enough analysis and evidence for her claims. Too many times I found myself asking the questions: how? and why? While I am inclined to agree with her central claim, her argument in the specifics was too simplistic and she often presented the link between aid and Africa's plight as causal, when really it seem corollary.
The book is too short and the analysis too brief to hold up to the mighty claim that she proposes. Clocking in at only 153 pages, the book dedicates 19 pages to a brief history of aid (which is really well done), another 19 pages to show that aid isn't working, and 21 pages to prove that aid actually kills growth. While I'm not a fan of bloated writing for no reason, Moyo needed more evidence, more explanation to back up her arguments.
Even though I found the beginning part of the book frustrating at times, I was looking forward to her ideas on how to develop Africa without the help of aid (which the next 80 pages or so are dedicated towards). She has some interesting ideas around capital markets, foreign direct investment, and micro-lending, but again I found her arguments to be overly simplistic and too brief to be convincing. She discusses how trade should be a big factor in the growth of Africa, something that's obviously true.Read more ›
What Moyo has done has shown how aid is pure folly in the vast majority of cases and how, mainly China now, is showing what direct investment in Africa can do. There are successes pre-China into Africa that Moyo covers such as Botswana which show that outside of the big boys of South Africa and Egypt that African nations can get their act together.
The fun thing about the book is she breaks it all down by introducing a fictional typical African nation called Dongo to some chapters to show how her theories may play out. Look, let's get over the idea she has all the answers. At least she is presenting an interesting argument and one that most aid workers will readily admit is true (at least off the record).
All in all, it's a must-read for anyone interested in the global economy, Africa and aid in general.
Most recent customer reviews
WELL WRITTEN AND ARGUED. SOMETIMES TEDIOUSLY REPETITIVE ON THE SAME POINT FOR ME BUT I GUESS IT SOMETIMES NEEDS TO BE SAID MANY TIMES BEFORE THE MESSAGE GETS THROUGH.Published on Jan. 21 2013 by David Walker
First off, allow me to introduce myself. I am a third year undergraduate International Development student at the University of Waterloo. Read morePublished on May 19 2012 by Kevin
I can't think of any other political text which describes the author to be "glamorous" on the jacket, but I suppose that is the sort of effect this piece is trying to achieve. Read morePublished on March 3 2011 by RoseHipps
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