Stiglitz on Washington Consensus

Doug Henwood dhenwood at
Tue Jul 28 10:50:24 PDT 1998

World Bank chief economist Joseph Stiglitz' critique of the Washington Consensus - what he calls an emerging post-Washington consensus consensus - is available at <>. From his intro:

>I would like to discuss improvements in our understanding of economic
>development, in particular the emergence of what is sometimes called the
>'post-Washington consensus'. My remarks elaborate on two themes. The
>first is that we have come to a better understanding of what makes
>markets work well. The Washington consensus held that good economic
>performance required liberalized trade, macroeconomic stability, and
>getting prices right (see Williamson 1990). Once the government dealt
>with these issues - essentially, once the government 'got out of the
>way' - private markets would allocate resources efficiently and generate
>robust growth. To be sure, all of these are important for markets to
>work well: it is very difficult for investors to make good decisions
>when inflation is running at 100 per cent a year and IS highly variable.
>But the policies advanced by the Washington consensus are not complete,
>and they are sometimes misguided. Making markets work requires more than
>just low inflation; it requires sound financial regulation, competition
>policy, and policies to facilitate the transfer of technology and to
>encourage transparency, to cite some fundamental issues neglected by the
>Washington consensus.


More information about the lbo-talk mailing list