The End of Poverty
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The End of Poverty

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3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  6,386 ratings  ·  567 reviews
Jeffrey D. Sachs has been cited by The New York Times Magazine as “probably the most important economist in the world” and by Time as “the world’s best-known economist.” He has advised an extraordinary range of world leaders and international institutions on the full range of issues related to creating economic success and reducing the world’s poverty and misery. Now, at l...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published February 28th 2006 by Penguin Books (first published January 1st 2005)
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Riku Sayuj

Towards the End of Poverty: A Manifesto


The difference between a solid policy prescription book and an evocative manifesto is hard to make out if it is an economist writing it. I should have known which side this would fall on once I saw that the introduction was by Bono, but I let the forceful and articulate Bono force me into buying this one. In the store, Bono’s righteous anger was infectious and the book could not be put down. It sounded like a moral obligation:

Fifteen thousand people dying
...more
Sean
You, being a smart person who is up on contemporary debates in economics and development and/or are a reader of Vanity Fair, probably already know all about Sachs and this book.

Sachs made his name giving “shock therapy” to various third world economies. He recommended they jack up interest rates, and pushed them towards neo-liberal free market structures. His career hit a bit of a bad patch when he was associated with the economic meltdown of the former Soviet Socialist Republic. This book is hi...more
Helga Mohammed el-Salami
What do Bono, and countless other celebrities have in common with the author? A: They’ve always wanted to be celebrities. What is different? A: The celebs actually think that the world can be rid of poverty and misery and vice.

Are you honestly going to tell me that one of the world’s most influential economists ACTUALLY believes that poverty can be banished or even meaningfully reduced? Not a chance. Not with Africa’s population growth rate. Sachs is selling panic again to promote himself and i...more
Jim
A well written book. In my opinion it can not be read without also reading William Easterly's book "The Quest For Growth." The two scholors are at war with each other. Their debate is all the more interesting when you read the back and forth op-ed pieces they have written in the Washington Post.

I tend to agree with Easterly: Sachs means well, but he is very full of himself. His book is more a tribute to what he can do, and other economists can't than a good debate on the issues. Flying Bono aro...more
Athena
I expected to give this book one star, but I could get behind enough of Sachs' ideas to give it two. Sachs opposes IMF/WB austerity measures to promote development, and defends health care, education, and other services as public goods. He advocates taxing the rich and getting the world's wealthiest people to invest their money in the world's poorest people. He opposes Bush's excessive military spending because he thinks US and global security are more effectively guaranteed by cutting down glob...more
Lorraine
Another book written by a rich caucasian on how to solve "Third World" problems. Sachs floats a lot of "economic theories" and Bono throws in his bit as well. Understandably so, they've never walked a mile in a poor person's shoes. Some things are just as nature intended. We cannot all be wealthy CEOs, who'll do the ground work?. Intervention does more harm than good, most of the time. Some relief schemes are built on greed and filth. Just look at USaid!! Closer to home, look at the giant retail...more
Hytham
يمنحنا المؤلف في الكتاب منهج لاستئصال الفقر من العالم بحلول عام 2025 ، عبر تحليل متميز وشرح منطقي للتجربة ..
الكتاب متميز قرأته للمرة الأولى من حوالي سنتين ،والآن أكتشف فيه الجديد بعد القراءة الثانية ..
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One of Cambridge Sustainability's Top 50 Books for Sustainability, as voted for by our alumni network of over 3,000 senior leaders from around the world. To find out more, click here.

The End of Poverty argues that extreme poverty, defined by the World Bank as having an income of less than $1 a day, is 'the poverty that kills'. However, it is almost entirely preventable and solvable (as has been shown in developed countries and many developing countries) through the provision of basic services in...more
David Johnson
Generation X seems to have missed out on causes greater than ourselves. The Greatest Generation had World War II. The baby boomers had efforts to overcome racial discrimination and end the war in Vietnam. Gen X'ers have enjoyed economic prosperity and although there were events going on in the world where we should have stood up and rallied the nation around the need to do the right thing (ending genocide in Bosnia, Rwanda, and Darfur come to mind), we opted to continue the materialistic pursuit...more
Paul T
Oh Jeff...can I call you Jeff? No? Ok. Dr. Sachs, you're ideas are way too lofty and boring, but you're really enthusiastic about them so everyone likes you. I only think you're OK. What happens when all of Bono's money goes into the pockets of corrupt dictators? Will he be able to afford more sunglasses so he can continue to have pictures of himself taken with brown kids in the bright African sun? I think he will. Meanwhile, entrepreneurs in those bright African places will continue stay stagna...more
Kristin
A new way to think of global economics, for sure. I need some time to process his concept of capitalism with a heart as the best vehicle for social justice. I can respect the way Sachs tries to find a middle ground between dog-eat-dog free-market systems and closed authoritarian systems. A little repetitive at the end and not super well-written.
Viktor Shchedrin
http://domestic-lynx.livejournal.com/...

Рассуждения Сакса вплотную подводят к необходимости новой версии колониализма. Колониализма на новом витке исторической спирали. Этот новый колониализм есть диалектическое отрицание того нео-колониализма, который есть сегодня, и в качестве отрицания отрицания – на горизонте возникает новый колониализм - отчасти повторяющий некоторые черты того, давнего, колониализма, а отчасти представляющий собою новый этап развития.
...Вообще-то с толком эксплуатировать...more
Larry
Nov 30, 2008 Larry rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: all caring people
Jeffrey Sachs has more degrees and social achievements in his modest years than most people of that social responsibility crowd achieve in a lifetime. His driving passion is not to achieve an equal distribution of wealth but rather to raise the average wealth of all mankind by helping to bring the poorest of us out of poverty. In this offering he calculates the modest cost (an amount equal to one cup of Starbucks coffee from every American) and the practical application (helping people help them...more
Ilya
Sachs visited Malawi a few times in the 2000s, and met the country's vice-president, "a remarkably fine individual, a dignified, eloquent, a popular figure in what is against all odds a multiparty democracy." He "came to know Malawi relatively well" and saw people dying of AIDS, depleted soil, no medicines in the hospital, children stunted from malnutrition. Paul Theroux visited the country in 2001; unlike Sachs, he speaks Chichewa, the Bantu language widely spoken in Malawi, having worked in wh...more
Toru
It is about macroeconomic solutions to end world poverty, written by one of the world's most influential economic advisors. Starts off with a global picture of poverty, then goes on to modern history from the Industrial Revolution on, in a economic/human development point-of-view. From this book one shall learn that geopolitics has had a lot do with why some countries are so well off while others just seem to keep on getting worse.

He explains why ODA in the past have failed, and why the World B...more
Lisa
This book was written by left-leaning Jeffrey Sachs, who you can see on Morning Joe at least once a week.
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This book was a more interesting read than I thought it would be. I assumed Sachs would just say to take American taxpayer money and give it to 3rd world countries. Well, he did say that, but he also discussed the reasons many countries are impoverished.

Certainly the United States is at an advantage when it comes to our form of government, our economic model, our natural resources, and our...more
Mark
Sachs is a world reknowned economist who goes into detail about his work in Guatemala, India, Poland, and Russia, which put him on the map. Many of these countries face hyperinflation, and he guided them to stabilize their money, and receive debt cancellation from other countries – a very controversial issue at the time. In the beginning he explains what the poverty trap is – how some countries cannot even get on the first rung of the economic ladder because of their lack of natural resources, p...more
Hadrian
Read for class.

Sachs' ideas are becoming so commonplace in discussions of modern development that it would be foolhardy not to read him. His advocacy of 'shock therapy' in economics controversial at best, and I won't go into detail about it here.

I am very impressed with some of his ideas about how geography impacts development (similar to some of the ideas mentioned in Guns Germs and Steel) and how each government should increase aid with simple technological solutions, but again, some are drec...more
Jamie
Sachs focuses on the plight of the 1 billion people in extreme poverty, of which 20,000 perish each day. The book centers on the idea that we need to help the extreme poor to climb onto the ladder of economic development, which is currently out of their reach. Eight problems are noted that can cause a country to fail: Poverty trap (unable to accumulate capital per person), physical geography, fiscal trap (limited government resources), governance failures, cultural barriers (undermined rights of...more
Bobby
An excellent book about developmental economics. While Jeffrey Sachs is criticized for being "too naive" in this book by some others who work in this field, I for one appreciated his optimistic--yet grounded in reality--approach to how to reduce poverty in developing countries. I especially enjoyed the first half of the book which was a surprisingly fast read. It includes specific examples of various economies, e.g., Bolivia, Poland, Russia, China, India, Africa, and the unique challenges and su...more
H. Ryan
With convincing maps, graphs, and tables of real numbers, Jeffrey Sachs, although a bit of a know-it-all makes a compelling argument why many people today are suffering in a destitute-poverty trap, which need not be the case. Lots of interesting tidbits like the fallacy of saying corruption is the reason why African economies haven't taken off and why arguments concluding that cultural heritage has vast economic consequences don't hold weight. Here's a quote on that last: "Early in the twentieth...more
Jeffcolli
When I first read this book, I jumped on the Jeff Sachs train pretty enthusiastically. At that point, I probably would have rated this book with 5 stars. Now, after spending more time reading about development economics, this work seems less impressive. If you share the view that the only thing that will save poor countries are massive infusions of foreign aid, you will find much to agree with in this book. However, many of the author's conclusions are not based on sound logic. In addition, the...more
Wealhtheow
Sachs has a few good, very basic ideas. Mostly what I got from this book was that he agrees with me that paying so little (~0.2% of our GNP) in foreign aid, and tying it to so many requirements and paperwork, is false economy. Unfortunately, it's a very dull book. Most of it is spent detailing every little talk and piece of advice he's given, and naming every important or famous person he's ever met. What little conceptual work is tainted by A)his seething hatred for communism and B)a complete l...more
Solongo
Definitely a must read for those who are into development so that his ideas and views can be compared with those of others such as William Easterly, Paul Collier, Dambisa Moyo etc. Sachs is definitely the experienced and knowledgeable figure in the field of development economics but that does not mean he will always be right. His ideas of ending extreme poverty mainly with an increase of aid were calculated far too simplistically. Still this was an insightful read with interesting points of diff...more
Kate Jongbloed
This book basically summarized four years of my development studies education. I like how Sachs is able to fit it all into a relatively short, easy read, and hope that the book will help to mainstream some ideas about development economics that are usually relegated to the World Bank and development academics. The book is inspiring and pragmatic at the same time, though I wonder about the world ever being efficient enough to achieve the goals set in the book. "Foreign assistance is not a welfare...more
Bryan Bridgeman
Very interesting premise. The end of poverty is achievable in our lifetime!
Brady
As someone with a passion for helping the poor, I thought this book would be a worthwhile read. However, I walk away feeling like I listened to a broken record for the entire book.

Sachs' main thesis in my opinion is that poor countries need a fresh start via debt cancellation, coupled with an injection of ODA provided by the world's rich countries. He illustrated this argument 500 times in a variety of ways. His style was too confrontational and "I know best" for my liking. After hearing "me",...more
Anders K.
I strongly believe that this is one of the most important books to read for the current generation. Although Sachs at times seems like an ideologist, I share his sentiments and am grateful for how his book portrays that ending extreme poverty is within our grasp, and probably a lot simpler than we think. His methodology is excellent and provides generalized but valuable lessons on development work.
Jared
Jeffrey Sachs is a liberal economist, which means that even though he knows free markets work he tries to talk about it as little as possible and prefers to talk about the importance of government intervention.

In this book he also talks about how he truthfully did help many economies recover by using free market principles but for some reason the free market is not the answer in the future. In the future it's all about government programs and massive foreign investment and a free market has a s...more
Pat Ramsey
A combination advocacy, economics, and educational book. Well worth the ready for the conscienstious individual. Sachs gives a palatable explanation of his economic philosophy and recommendations, and describes a number of countries' recent economic evolution. Sachs presents a viable economic diagnois for poverty in our time if the will exists.
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Is an American economist and Director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University. One of the youngest economics professors in the history of Harvard University, Sachs became known for his role as an adviser to Eastern European and developing country governments in the implementation of so-called economic shock therapy during the transition from communism to a market system or during periods of...more
More about Jeffrey D. Sachs...
Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet The Price of Civilization: Reawakening American Virtue and Prosperity To Move the World: JFK's Quest for Peace Investing in Development: A Practical Plan to Achieve the Millennium Development Goals Poland's Jump to the Market Economy

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“The vast differences in power contributed to faulty social theories of these differences that are still with us today. When a society is economically dominant, it is easy for its members to assume that such dominance reflects a deeper superiority--whether religious, racial, genetic, cultural, or institutional--rather than an accident of timing or geography.” 8 likes
“Una combinación de inversiones en sintonía con las necesidades y condiciones locales pueden permitir que las economías africanas escapen de la trampa de la pobreza” 2 likes
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