Great Divergence and Great Convergence

A Global Perspective

  • Leonid Grinin
  • Andrey Korotayev

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Leonid Grinin, Andrey Korotayev
    Pages 17-84
  3. Leonid Grinin, Andrey Korotayev
    Pages 85-113
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 167-251

About this book


This new monograph provides a stimulating new take on hotly contested topics in world modernization and the globalizing economy. It begins by situating what is called the Great Divergence--the social/technological revolution that led European nations to outpace the early dominance of Asia--in historical context over centuries. This is contrasted with an equally powerful Great Convergence, the recent economic and technological expansion taking place in Third World nations and characterized by narrowing inequity among nations. They are seen here as two phases of an inevitable global process, centuries in the making, with the potential for both positive and negative results.


This sophisticated presentation examines:


  • Why the developing world is growing more rapidly than the developed world.
  • How this development began occurring under the Western world's radar.
  • How former colonies of major powers grew to drive the world's economy.
  • Why so many Western economists have been slow to recognize the Great Convergence.
  • The increasing risk of geopolitical instability.
  • Why the world is likely to find itself without an absolute leader after the end of the American hegemony


A work of rare scope, Great Divergence and Great Convergence gives sociologists, global economists, demographers, and global historians a deeper understanding of the broader movement of social and economic history, combined with a long view of history as it is currently being made; it also offers some thrilling forecasts for global development in the forthcoming decades.


Fourth World Bottom Billion Great Divergence drivers of the Great Convergence globalization trends modern world economy reconfiguring the World System

Authors and affiliations

  • Leonid Grinin
    • 1
  • Andrey Korotayev
    • 2
  1. 1.Eurasian Center of Big History and System ForecastingInstitute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  2. 2.International Laboratory of Political, Demography and Social MacrodynamicsRussian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration(RANEPA)MoscowRussia

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Business and Economics
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-17779-3
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-17780-9
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Finance, Business & Banking