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The Dragon in the Room: China and the Future of Latin American Industrialization

Part of the China Business Seminar series.

October 25, 2011 12:15pm to 12:00am

In the eyes of many, China's unprecedented economic rise has brought nothing but good news to the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. Indeed, China's growing appetite for primary products, and the ability of Latin America to supply that demand, has played a role in restoring growth in Latin America, both in the run-up to the global financial crisis and in its aftermath.

The dragon in the room that few are talking about is the fact that China is simultaneously out-competing Latin American manufacturers in world markets—so much so that it may threaten the ability of the region to generate long-term economic growth. Professor Gallagher finds China is rapidly building the technological capabilities necessary for industrial development, whereas Latin American tech innovation and sophistication lags considerably. At a deeper level, Professor Gallagher’s findings imply that China's road to globalization, one that emphasizes gradualism and coordinated macro-economic and industrial policies, is far superior to the "Washington Consensus" route taken by most Latin American nations, particularly Mexico.

Kevin P. Gallagher
is associate professor in International Relations at Boston University and Senior Researcher at the Global Development and Environment Institute, Tufts University. He is the co-author with Roberto Porzecanski of the new book, The Dragon in the Room: China and the Future of Latin American Industrialization, and the co-author of The Enclave Economy: Foreign Investment and Sustainable Development in Mexico’s Silicon Valley (2007), and Free Trade and the Environment: Mexico, NAFTA, and Beyond (2004). He writes regular columns on globalization and economic development for The Guardian and Financial Times.

Guests are welcome to bring their lunch to the talk. Beverages and desserts will be provided.

China Business Seminar
In this series, leading practitioners and scholars of Chinese business are invited to address critical issues relevant to understanding China as both a competitor and a place for doing business. The seminar aims to address leading policy matters, the contemporary business environment in historical perspective, and research on business history.


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