What Does Geography Explain?

 Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson on Jared Diamond:

Another major problem for Diamond’s argument is that it has little to say about inequality within continents, which is an essential part of modern world inequality. For example,  the orientation of the Eurasian landmass might explain how England managed to benefit from the innovations of the Middle East without having to reinvent them. But it doesn’t explain why the Industrial Revolution happened in England rather than in Eastern Europe or in the Ottoman Empire.More critically, as Diamond himself also recognizes, China and India benefited greatly from very rich suites of animals and plants, and from the orientation of Eurasia. But most of the poor people of the world today are in those two countries.

via What Does Geography Explain? – Why Nations Fail – Why Nations Fail by Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson.

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