Why Democracy Matters

  • Edward Friedman


From a global perspective, reform in both China and India is a success in terms of poverty alleviation, a most important dimension of regime performance. Poverty was reduced by one-third in India in the first decade or so of reform. The World Bank found that “China, along with India, was also responsible for the fall in the share of the world’s population living in extreme poverty—from just over 40 percent in 1981 [when the socialist command economy was just beginning to be rejected by China’s rulers] to just over 20 percent by 2001” (Balls 2004). Economic reform pays off, even for the poor. Raising the question of how India and China have been able “to take advantage of globalization…” (Fukuyama 2004), both seemed successes. “China is going places, but so is India” (Pesek 2003).


Economic Reform Chinese Communist Party Rural Poor Eastern Economic Review Indian Villager 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Edward Friedman and Bruce Gilley 2005

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  • Edward Friedman

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