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Walt Rostow

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  • 1. Walt Whitman Rostow The economist, not the writer By Maeve Russell
  • 2. Who was Walter Rostow?  Walt Whitman Rostow was born in 1916 to two Jewish emigrants from Russia  Rostow had advised for the Eisenhower Administration, worked under two other presidents (Kennedy and Johnson), and taught for numerous prestigious colleges.  His most famous book on economy was The Stages of http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e9/Walt_Rostow_1968.jpg Economic Growth
  • 3. The Stages of Economic Growth  In his book, Rostow theorized that each and every country goes through 5 stages of economic growth  First stage: A traditional society, with subsistence agriculture, and a domestic industry  Second stage (preconditions for take-off):localized resource undergoes development, and an export economy thrives  Third stage (take-off): Exploitation of a major resource leads to a rapid political change  Fourth stage (drive to maturity): The society creates a more diverse industrial base and increases trade  Fifth stage (age of mass consumption): an advanced development of an industrial economy occurs
  • 4. Controversial?  Rostow’s five, uneven stages contrasted to the other models of his day.  Economists felt as though his model was too vague, varied too much at each country, and included far too many factors (instead of only taking into account output, production and technology). http://www.coverbrowser.com/image/economics-books/548-8.jpg
  • 5. Rostow’s Reasons for His Theory http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2038/1510234297_c0a6e9643e.jpg?v=0  Rostow had observed how production in “leading sectors” would spill over into less developed ones, and how investments in production processes could alter the economy.  He decided to create a model to that emphasized, “the uniqueness of each nation’s experience.”  However, many modern day economists still consider his model to be very western, and say that nations may develop in other ways
  • 6. Why is this important? http://media.us.macmillan.com/jackets/500H/9780374531621.jpg  Rostow’s model has become a fundamental subject in many introductory classes on economics and human geography.  His model began heated discussions and experiments among economists in in many countries
  • 7. Why is this important? (cont’d)  Scholars from different backgrounds began to get involved in these discussions, and more diverse and universal theories were created.  People began to accept that development was complex, involved numerous variables, and was an uneven process.
  • 8. THE END
  • 9. Works Cited  “Rostovian take-off model:Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article.” AbsoluteAstronomy.com. Web. 22 Sept. 2009. http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Rostovian_take-off_model.  “Walter Rostow.” TimesOnline. New York Times, 19 Feb. 2003. Web. 22 Sept. 2009. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/obirtuaries/article882341.ece.  Milne, David. “Rostow, Walt Whitman.” The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives. Vol. 7. Farmington Hills: Thomson Gale, 2007. 478-81. Print.  Norton, William. Human Geography. Fifth ed. Ontario: Oxford UP, 2004. Print.  “Walt Whitman Rostow.” The University of Texas at Austin - Web Central. Web. 27 Sept. 2009. http://www.utexas.edu/faculty/council/2003- 2004/memorials/rostow/rostow.html.

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