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East Asia and Eastern Europe in a Globalized Perspective

Lessons from Korea and Estonia


Bernhard Seliger, Jüri Sepp and Ralph Wrobel

This book compares development experiences from South Korea and Estonia, which are both very successful examples of development within their region. The development experience of states in the 20th century offers a bewildering variety and often downright contradicting models, which nevertheless led to catching-up and rapid growth rates, leaving policy-makers in countries trying to emulate such models at a loss. Over time and through various crises on the regional and worldwide level, the experience of East Asian states became increasingly an interesting object of study. This was related to the successful long-term growth experience of countries like South Korea, but also to successful models of state transformation, which, though in a different political setting, achieved high growth rates without the deep transformation recession typical for European transformation states.
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Practicing Catching-up: a Comparison of Development Models of East Asian and Central-Eastern European Countries


1.  Introduction

This article makes an attempt to compare the development patterns of the economies of the East Asian and Central and Eastern European (CEE) regions, which have been the fastest in catching up on the global arena. It observes both the internal features of the economies and economic policies and the parameters characterising their relation with the international background (openness, integration). he statistical materials used have been taken mostly from the World Economic Forum competitiveness reports and from the WB and IMF sources, while the descriptions of economic policy and its dynamic are based on materials concerning the regions under discussion and their individual countries. The goal of the article is not to reach conclusions characterising the behaviour of the economies of the entire East Asian or CEE regions, but the economic development models, specific features, development and performing of countries, which have displayed top performance in either region and have reached the level of developed economies.

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