Export Pioneers in Latin America (Paperback)

By Charles Sabel (Editor), Eduardo Fernandez-Arias (Editor), Ricardo Hausmann (Editor)

David Rockefeller Center for Latin American S, 9781597821414, 314pp.

Publication Date: June 11, 2012

List Price: 29.95*
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Why do some new export activities succeed while others do not? Why are some not even attempted? In this book, distinguished research teams analyze eleven cases of new export endeavors in six Latin American countries to learn how export pioneers are born and jump-start a virtuous process leading to economic transformation. The case studies range from blueberries in Argentina and fresh cut flowers in Colombia to aircraft in Brazil and software in Uruguay. They put to the test two conjectures: that costly burdens to entrepreneurial self-discovery due to imitation by competitors deter would-be pioneers (the low appropriation hypothesis advanced by Harvard's Hausmann and Rodrik) and that new export activities are a complex enterprise that only reach fruition when the innovative contributions of many actors are somehow provided jointly (the failure of coordination hypothesis). These case studies offer many examples in which cooperation proved absolutely vital to export success, while problems of appropriation appeared less critical. Interestingly, in solving coordination problems, innovators frequently mitigated problems of appropriation. Coordination is difficult, however, and, as the tales of these export pioneers suggest, industrial policy has an important role to play in facilitating it.

About the Author

Charles Sabel is Maurice T. Moore Professor of Law and Social Science at Columbia Law School. Eduardo Fernandez-Arias is Lead Economist at the Inter-American Development Bank. Ricardo Hausmann is Professor of the Practice of Economic Development at Harvard University. Andres Rodriguez is Professor of Economics at Pennsylvania State University. Ernesto Stein is Lead Economist at the Inter-American Development Bank.