Monday, February 22, 2016

A Public Lecture by Dr. Jeffrey Gale Williamson

The Asian Center, University of the Philippines Diliman will be hosting a public lecture, “The Commodity Export, Growth, and Distribution Connection in Southeast Asia, 1500–1940,” by Professor Jeffrey Gale Williamson, PhD on 9 March 2016, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the 2F, Seminar Room, Hall of Wisdom, GT-Toyota Asian Cultural Center, Asian Center, University of the Philippines Diliman. The lecture is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC; seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Register here.

Below is an overview of Professor Williamson’s lecture, where

he “explores Southeast Asia’s trade, growth, and inequality performance over the four and a half centuries from 1500 to 1940. It identifies the determinants of the commodity export performance – falling trade costs, income growth of its rich trading partners, and improved supply conditions at home. It also explores its impact on Southeast Asia’s growth performance: trade specialization generated more macro volatility, de-industrialization, rising colonial power, and greater inequality up to World War 1, but these forces turned around in the region thereafter, including some modest industrial catch-up. Finally, the paper elaborates on the distributional impact and colonial profitability of commodity export booms and busts throughout the last century.”

Organized by the UP Asian Center and co-sponsored by the UP Third World Studies Center, this lecture is based on Professor Williamson’s chapter published in The Routledge Handbook of Southeast Asian Economics (2014).


Professor Jeffrey G. Williamson is Laird Bell Professor of Economics and Professor Emeritus at Harvard University and currently Visiting Professor at the School of Economics, University of the Philippines Diliman. An Honorary Fellow at the Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, he has written several books on economics, including Globalization and the Poor Periphery before 1950 (MIT 2006), Trade and Poverty: When the Third World Fell Behind (MIT 2011), and The Cambridge History of Capitalism (2 vols. 2014: ed. with Larry Neal), among others. Professor Williamson also served as President of the Economic History Association (1994–1995), and Chairman of the Harvard Economics Department (1997–2000).

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