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Midterm Test GGR329.docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Pierre Desrochers

1 How does Christine Rodrigue define environmental determinism What is the link made by Nathan Nunn between geography or landscape and later African development List four of the five 5 physical and historical circumstances which Pinkovskiy and SalaiMartin argue had no impact on recent poverty reduction in Africa1Physical environment determines fate of humansA variant of Social Darwinismthe appropriation of Darwins theory of natural selection for use directly on human societies usually for racist or imperialist apologia2In Africa rugged terrain afforded protection during slave trades slave trades retarded subsequent economic development ruggedness has had a historical indirect positive effect on income in Africa 3The growth from the period 19952006 far from benefiting only the elites has been sufficiently widely spread that both total African inequality and African withincountry inequality actually declined over this periodThe speed at which Africa has reduced poverty since 1995 puts it on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of halving poverty relative to 1990 by 2015 on time or at worst a couple of years lateIf the Democratic Republic of Congo converges to the African trend once it is stabilised the MDG will be achieved by 2012 three years before the target dateWe also find that the African poverty reduction is remarkably generalAfrican poverty reduction cannot be explained by a large country or even by a single set of countries possessing some beneficial geographical or historical characteristicAll classes of countries including those with disadvantageous geography and history experience reductions in poverty2 What is Ricardo Hausmanns argument as to how the fact that a country is landlocked affects its growth prospects How does he account for the plight of tropical agriculture1The geography is transportation costs are often determined by a countrys geography Land transportation is especially costly for landlocked countries2tropical nations with poor soil an erratic climate and vulnerability to infectious diseaseagricultural sector is much less dynamic in tropical areas than in temperate zones3 What are Ludwig von Mises and Thomas R DeGregoris main arguments against environmentalgeographical determinism Give a few examples used by each author1ludwing Von mises Geography sets a task but man has to solve itEXdefinite situation determined by geography history social institutions mores and ideologiesThomas fertility is inherent not in soils but in our transformation or amending of them EXTo use geography as an explanation for relative achievement of countries over timeIs to use what is essentially a constant to explain a variable phenomenon4 What are Jeffrey Sachs basic observations as to the importance of geography for economic development In his opinion what role does geography play in the plight of subSaharan Africa1Almost all tropical countries are poor while countries in midhigh latitudes are richCoastal economies are generally wealthier than landlocked onesCountries close to large markets more likelyopen trade policies than countries distant from them2Landmass concentrated in tropics diseases poor soilFew navigable riversPopulation heavily concentrated in interiorOnly 19 living100 km from coast25 in landlocked countries far from core European markets5 Why does Diamond believe that New Guineans are smarter than WesternersNew Guineans daily activities make them think more than Westerners do
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