How Asia Works

How Asia Works : Success and Failure in the World's Most Dynamic Region

4.24 (1,103 ratings by Goodreads)
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Named by Bill Gates as one of his Top 5 Books of the Year
An Economist Best Book of the Year In the 1980s and 1990s many in the West came to believe in the myth of an East-Asian economic miracle, with countries seen as not just development prodigies but as a unified bloc, culturally and economically similar, and inexorably on the rise. In How Asia Works, Joe Studwell distills extensive research into the economics of nine countries--Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, and China--into an accessible, readable narrative that debunks Western misconceptions, shows what really happened in Asia and why, and for once makes clear why some countries have boomed while others have languished. Impressive in scope, How Asia Works is essential reading for anyone interested in a region that will shape the future of the world.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 366 pages
  • 137.16 x 208.28 x 30.48mm | 362.87g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0802121322
  • 9780802121325
  • 140,163

Review quote

Praise for How Asia Works "I found the book to be quite compelling. . . . Studwell's book does a better job than anything else I've read of articulating the key role of agriculture in development. . . . A good read for anyone who wants to understand what actually determines whether a developing economy will succeed."--Bill Gates, "Top 5 Books of the Year" "Pithy, well-written and intellectually vigorous . . . Studwell's thesis is bold, his arguments persuasive, and his style pugnacious. It adds up to a highly readable and important book."--Financial Times "Provocative. ... How Asia Works is a striking and enlightening book ... A lively mix of scholarship, reporting and polemic."--The Economist "Very readable.... A fascinating and thoroughly deep account."--Bloomberg Radio "Gripping ... Readers will find Studwell's informative and balanced report eye-opening."--Publishers Weekly "Consistently engaging."--Booklist "Studwell paints a vivid picture of business life in the region. If a copy of the Korean edition finds its way across the demilitarized zone to Pyongyang ... we may find we have yet another Asian Tiger in our midst."--Management Today "A solid blend of the descriptive and the prescriptive, with plenty of lessons that will be of interest to Asia hands, investors and policymakers."--Kirkus Reviews "Perhaps my favorite economics book of the year. Quite simply, it is the best single treatment on what in Asian industrial policy worked or did not work, full of both analysis and specific detail, and covering southeast Asia in addition to the Asian tiger 'winners.' ... Definitely recommended, you will learn lots from it, and it will upset people of virtually all ideologies."--Tyler Cowen, Marginal Revolution "Illuminating"--Independent (UK) "An interesting analysis of policy decisions that have and haven't worked . . . a handy guide for anyone interested in one of the world's fastest developing regions."--The Economic Times (India) "Studwell's latest book, How Asia Works, is also his most ambitions. . . . Declining to make broad pronouncements or dovetail with doctrine, Studwell demonstrates that the way Asia works isn't quite as simple as we ever imagined."--Smart Planet "A landmark work."--Asia Times (Bangkok) "Bold and insightful. . . . Essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the ingredients for economic success."--The News International (Pakistan)
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About Joe Studwell

Joe Studwell is the founder of the China Economic Quarterly. He has worked as a freelance journalist in Asia for nearly two decades. He is the author of The China Dream and Asian Godfathers.
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Rating details

1,103 ratings
4.24 out of 5 stars
5 44% (490)
4 39% (434)
3 13% (140)
2 3% (32)
1 1% (7)
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