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Basic requirements for a country to develop

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Harburs View Drop Down
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    Posted: 20 Sep 2012 at 07:25
What are the basic requirements for a country to develop to a modern state?
All Ideas are welcome. 

It is better to make a list of materials and explain each one if it is possible.
I start with a small list.

1. A good source of income. Mineral, oil, farm products,...
2. A homogeneous population to maintain harmony. countries with two or more rival ethnicity are places for struggle and division.
3. A country that has no powerful greedy or expansionist neighbor.
4. A culture that values hard working and intelligence.
5. Benevolent and visionary leaders.
6. A sense of national pride.
7. Investment in development
8. Reforms in law and regulations to make manufacturing and trade more practical and dynamic.

Place share your knowledge.



Edited by Harburs - 20 Sep 2012 at 07:27
"Turn yourself not away from three best things: Good Thought, Good Word, and Good Deed" Zoroaster.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Sep 2012 at 09:09
I will comment on each suggestion before I put my own.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

What are the basic requirements for a country to develop to a modern state?
All Ideas are welcome. 

It is better to make a list of materials and explain each one if it is possible.
I start with a small list.

1. A good source of income. Mineral, oil, farm products,...
 
Not necessarily. Japan had virtually nothing when it started industrialising back in the 1880s and look at it now.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

2. A homogeneous population to maintain harmony. countries with two or more rival ethnicity are places for struggle and division.
 
Granted. However certain countries prevailed despite diversity. Case in point the US.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

3. A country that has no powerful greedy or expansionist neighbor.
 
Actually such a greedy expansionist neighbour might actually be the catalyst for developement. Prussia, sandwitched between France and Russia was at a lower industrialisation rate than either around 1850. By 1900 it was the world's second economy exceeding the UK. 
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

4. A culture that values hard working and intelligence.
 
All cultures value work. Why else Mexicans average 3000 hours a year while the Americans 1800? It is much deeper than that.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

5. Benevolent and visionary leaders.
 
That is simply a myth. Benevolent leaders are so benevolent so as to keep themselves in power since they are by nature dictator (a democratically elected leader can never be "bevevolent"). They will through money on the people rather than develope them so as to foster dependency. Case in point the gulf states.
 
Visionary leaders on the other hand I am with you. A visionary leader will not hesitate taking the most unpopular positions for a higher cause. Bismarck comes to mind. He lead Prussia into one war after another knowing full well it might back fire but he eventually succeeded.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

6. A sense of national pride.
 
National pride is much more of a hinderence to developement than a source of it. Countless countries prefered national pride over sucking it up and developing with disasterous consequences. Iran is the latest country. It will sacrifice the achievements of 25 years of peace in which it managed to build a solid industrial base for a nuclear idol it will never use.
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

7. Investment in development
 
What kind of developement?
 
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

8. Reforms in law and regulations to make manufacturing and trade more practical and dynamic.
 
Being industrialised doesn't necessarily means developement. half the thing you use come from countries where they don't have running water in most cities.
 
For me, it is all about education. A well educated populace whether formal or informal is the best way to forment progress. The rest lies with the people themselves.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Sep 2012 at 09:51
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

What are the basic requirements for a country to develop to a modern state?
All Ideas are welcome. 

It is better to make a list of materials and explain each one if it is possible.
I start with a small list.

1. A good source of income. Mineral, oil, farm products,...
2. A homogeneous population to maintain harmony. countries with two or more rival ethnicity are places for struggle and division.
3. A country that has no powerful greedy or expansionist neighbor.
4. A culture that values hard working and intelligence.
5. Benevolent and visionary leaders.
6. A sense of national pride.
7. Investment in development
8. Reforms in law and regulations to make manufacturing and trade more practical and dynamic.

Place share your knowledge.

1: It is not that easy tio get a consensus about what ”development” means, though we may have a strong intuitive idea.

2: Our answers depends very much upon what is the limits of our “horizons” in time and territory. Do we discuss all of human history and prehistory since “Adam” (or rather since our pre-human ancestors or only a part of it? Do we discuss all of humans on the earth (since we have still not really made societies beyond)

or only some more narrow part of it?

Here I give some ideas what I speculate may have been most important for “long term” periods and on a large scale:

1: Natural Geography in general.

2:  If we discuss it more specific I think “natures limitations and opportunities for  “logistics” meaning transportation and communication.

A: the presence or absence of navigable rivers. Particularly important for early cultures, were the alternative was rather limited (walking).

B: Navigable coastlands, preferably long  stretches of it over a not too big distance.

C: A not too difficult terrain – not too big barriers, like mountains, desserts , etcetera.

I think for instance the so-called “rise of the west” (for a long period restricted to western Europe) were for a large part due to such geographical/logistic factors.

Then there is probably some reservations to be made for the last about 200 centuries, were technologies has changed the picture so much.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Sep 2012 at 13:17
Originally posted by Harburs Harburs wrote:

What are the basic requirements for a country to develop to a modern state?
All Ideas are welcome. 

It is better to make a list of materials and explain each one if it is possible.
I start with a small list.

1. A good source of income. Mineral, oil, farm products,...
2. A homogeneous population to maintain harmony. countries with two or more rival ethnicity are places for struggle and division.
3. A country that has no powerful greedy or expansionist neighbor.
4. A culture that values hard working and intelligence.
5. Benevolent and visionary leaders.
6. A sense of national pride.
7. Investment in development
8. Reforms in law and regulations to make manufacturing and trade more practical and dynamic.

Place share your knowledge.



1. Although it helps to have a fixed of income, a certain sign of progress is when a country is able to CREATE new sources of income, continuously.

2. The economical miracles are usually fueled by SKILLED immigrants (not to confuse with 3rd world refugees)

3. On the contrary, a challenge may trigger a response. I doubt Athens or Britain would have develop as much without the tough competitions and menaces of theirs neighbors.

4. More than work, what the culture must value is success thought hard work.

5. What a country needs are innovators rather than leaders.

6. Once again, if people is proud of its country don't try to improve it. What is need are people that want a BETTER life, and that want to CHANGE it all.

7. Investment is key.

8. Rather than laws, what are need are entrepreneurs an industrialists that change the industry.

And perhaps more important than all: population control. If people don't control breeding, they would never get out of poverty.


 



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Sep 2012 at 13:30
Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

 

1: It is not that easy tio get a consensus about what ”development” means, though we may have a strong intuitive idea.


Development means increases in income per capita.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


1: Natural Geography in general.

2:  If we discuss it more specific I think “natures limitations and opportunities for  “logistics” meaning transportation and communication.

A: the presence or absence of navigable rivers. Particularly important for early cultures, were the alternative was rather limited (walking).


Countries like mine, and most cultures in pre-Columbian Americas,  develop almost with no navigable river. Even more, in the U.S. the Mississippi river is not the hub of progress at all. Yes, the presence of some may accelerate progress, but not a basic condition.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


B: Navigable coastlands, preferably long  stretches of it over a not too big distance.


That may help, but countries like Switzerland lack coasts

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


C: A not too difficult terrain – not too big barriers, like mountains, desserts , etcetera.


Nonsense. The Inca empire developed crossing unbelievable barriers, and even today, there are many societies that grow against all odds.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

I think for instance the so-called “rise of the west” (for a long period restricted to western Europe) were for a large part due to such geographical/logistic factors.

Then there is probably some reservations to be made for the last about 200 centuries, were technologies has changed the picture so much.



I don't agree. The rise of the West was due to technology, that because historical circumstances was acquired during the low Middle Ages. It was very lucky for Europe that was able to add all its medieval inventions (clockwork, cathedrals, rudder, plow, universities) to a wave of Chinese inventions, to science and technology coming from Islam, and from the rediscovery of classical science and humanities. That mixture triggered the so called "Rise of the West", and it has nothing to do with landscapes or weather. And the reason why the West grew so fast was colonization: the destruction and exploitation of the Americas, the control of Asia, the African slaves, etc.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Sep 2012 at 20:28
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

 

1: It is not that easy tio get a consensus about what ”development” means, though we may have a strong intuitive idea.


Development means increases in income per capita.


Then some countries producing oil, gas are amongst the most "developed"?

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


1: Natural Geography in general.

2:  If we discuss it more specific I think “natures limitations and opportunities for  “logistics” meaning transportation and communication.

A: the presence or absence of navigable rivers. Particularly important for early cultures, were the alternative was rather limited (walking).


Countries like mine, and most cultures in pre-Columbian Americas,  develop almost with no navigable river. Even more, in the U.S. the Mississippi river is not the hub of progress at all. Yes, the presence of some may accelerate progress, but not a basic condition.
[/QUOTE]
Many facets of civilisation existing in other parts of the world were lacking in the ancient americas.  Rivers like Mississippi were relatively more important before a developed railway system, not to say automobile roads.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:



B: Navigable coastlands, preferably long  stretches of it over a not too big distance.


That may help, but countries like Switzerland lack coasts

[/QUOTE]
Switserland has benefitted from its neutrality and status as "safe haven" for foreign finance. Its mountains has probaby much to do with it. Plus it lies in short distance from many other "developed" countries (for the last cenmturies)

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


C: A not too difficult terrain – not too big barriers, like mountains, desserts , etcetera.


Nonsense. The Inca empire developed crossing unbelievable barriers, and even today, there are many societies that grow against all odds.[/QUOTE]

For most societies we can find a relationship with a geographical factor, I think, though i admit i have no "proof". About the Incas.1: I will question that it was amongst the most "developed" societies of its time, 2: That coastlines has been an important factor is not to say there has been no other.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

I think for instance the so-called “rise of the west” (for a long period restricted to western Europe) were for a large part due to such geographical/logistic factors.

Then there is probably some reservations to be made for the last about 200 centuries, were technologies has changed the picture so much.



I don't agree. The rise of the West was due to technology, that because historical circumstances was acquired during the low Middle Ages. It was very lucky for Europe that was able to add all its medieval inventions (clockwork, cathedrals, rudder, plow, universities) to a wave of Chinese inventions, to science and technology coming from Islam, and from the rediscovery of classical science and humanities. That mixture triggered the so called "Rise of the West", and it has nothing to do with landscapes or weather. And the reason why the West grew so fast was colonization: the destruction and exploitation of the Americas, the control of Asia, the African slaves, etc.

[/QUOTE] I frankly would not at all expect us to agree about very much.
Then on the other hand I will not at alldeny the role of technologies, of colonial exploitation, of slaves, etcetera. But I pose the question for myself is there anything more to say about it, something that made those historical developments could happen at some places and not others, and I find geographical factrors are one possibillity and even a very plausible one. Thaty is if we try to "dig a bit deeper". But as I wrote I would be surprised if You would be convinced about anything.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2012 at 04:07
Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


Then some countries producing oil, gas are amongst the most "developed"?


That's a good point. Some countries don't develop, even when they are flooded in money; that's true.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


Many facets of civilisation existing in other parts of the world were lacking in the ancient americas.  Rivers like Mississippi were relatively more important before a developed railway system, not to say automobile roads.


Sure, rivers helped Egypt, Germany, Britain and China to reach development, but that's not a general rule. Brazil, for instance, no matter it has some of the most generous river systems, the development is mainly elsewhere from the Amazon basin. In other words, if you lack the rivers, you may resort to railroad tracks and highways.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

Switserland has benefitted from its neutrality and status as "safe haven" for foreign finance. Its mountains has probaby much to do with it. Plus it lies in short distance from many other "developed" countries (for the last cenmturies)


Sure, living in the middle of Europe, helps. But the development of Switzerland was due to the watch industry and banking.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

For most societies we can find a relationship with a geographical factor, I think, though i admit i have no "proof". About the Incas.1: I will question that it was amongst the most "developed" societies of its time, 2: That coastlines has been an important factor is not to say there has been no other.


Yes, it makes development easier. However, development depends a lot more in human initiative that in anything else.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

I frankly would not at all expect us to agree about very much.
Then on the other hand I will not at alldeny the role of technologies, of colonial exploitation, of slaves, etcetera. But I pose the question for myself is there anything more to say about it, something that made those historical developments could happen at some places and not others, and I find geographical factrors are one possibillity and even a very plausible one. Thaty is if we try to "dig a bit deeper". But as I wrote I would be surprised if You would be convinced about anything.


Let start it from zero. Development depends on a single resource: human brains. With some important social assets such as literacy and education. When society adopts an efficient economical model, and the people has the ambition to succeed, nothing will stop them. Not even geography. That's why some Asian countries developed against all odds. 

Even more, some of the most interesting societies fought a war against nature to succeed. That's the case of Holland, Venice, etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2012 at 06:53
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


Then some countries producing oil, gas are amongst the most "developed"?


That's a good point. Some countries don't develop, even when they are flooded in money; that's true.

If so "development" does not mean "growth in per capita income", so we still lack a proper definition.

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:


Many facets of civilisation existing in other parts of the world were lacking in the ancient americas.  Rivers like Mississippi were relatively more important before a developed railway system, not to say automobile roads.


Sure, rivers helped Egypt, Germany, Britain and China to reach development, but that's not a general rule. Brazil, for instance, no matter it has some of the most generous river systems, the development is mainly elsewhere from the Amazon basin. In other words, if you lack the rivers, you may resort to railroad tracks and highways.

The options of resorting to railroads and highways has only been there for a very short part of history. I made from the beginning reservations for that resent part of history.

 

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:


Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

Switserland has benefitted from its neutrality and status as "safe haven" for foreign finance. Its mountains has probaby much to do with it. Plus it lies in short distance from many other "developed" countries (for the last cenmturies)


Sure, living in the middle of Europe, helps. But the development of Switzerland was due to the watch industry and banking.

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

The great role of banking may havbe very much to do with Switserlands tradition of neutrality.

Then it was probably a great help to be located as a "mountain inland", in the interior of Europe.

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

For most societies we can find a relationship with a geographical factor, I think, though i admit i have no "proof". About the Incas.1: I will question that it was amongst the most "developed" societies of its time, 2: That coastlines has been an important factor is not to say there has been no other.


Yes, it makes development easier. However, development depends a lot more in human initiative that in anything else.

The one does not exclude the other, I think.What kind of human initiatives making sense depends very much upon external circumstances, like natural ones, and the "initial stage of development" for a given period, I believe.

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

I frankly would not at all expect us to agree about very much.
Then on the other hand I will not at alldeny the role of technologies, of colonial exploitation, of slaves, etcetera. But I pose the question for myself is there anything more to say about it, something that made those historical developments could happen at some places and not others, and I find geographical factrors are one possibillity and even a very plausible one. Thaty is if we try to "dig a bit deeper". But as I wrote I would be surprised if You would be convinced about anything.


Let start it from zero. Development depends on a single resource: human brains. With some important social assets such as literacy and education. When society adopts an efficient economical model, and the people has the ambition to succeed, nothing will stop them. Not even geography. That's why some Asian countries developed against all odds. 

Even more, some of the most interesting societies fought a war against nature to succeed. That's the case of Holland, Venice, etc.
I have something to add:I find it makes little sense what You wrote about the brain. Humans and their brains are not free floating in some empty outer space.
Asian countries has as I see it some "gifts to nature".Countries like Japan and Korea, hong Kong and Singapore arwe all coastal countries, making sea transport easier. the same for much of China
(the coastal zones are from what I know by far the wealthiest parts). I would even say regarding coasts the region is more like Western Europe than most of the rest of the earth. 
About Holland: It was the nature of that country, flat lowlands, threatened by the sea, and with good agricultural potential that made its traditions for artificial "protection" of the land both possible, economic sustainable and "necessary".Venice became prosperous because it was located in an easily defendable position, with good logistic potential for seatrade,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pnyx Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Feb 2013 at 19:22
I think you need 2 things: adequate police and competent civilians 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Feb 2013 at 10:31
Originally posted by Pnyx Pnyx wrote:

I think you need 2 things: adequate police and competent civilians 
Not entirely wrong, but not very informative.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 May 2015 at 05:24
I think that there is no magic list.
For example, one would think that for civilization to develop, one would need the wheel, 
and yet the Incans did not have them except for toys.  
It may be a useful exercise to try to come up with a list,
but there will be nations that are modern that will not have all those things, and there will
be nations that do have all those things, but are not modern.

I will say one thing, infrastructure.  In Africa from what I understand, they lack
a lot of infrastructure and they have a lot substitutes for infrastructure.  They don't
have a lot of phone lines or fiber optic, but they have cell phones, they don't have
decent roads, but "everybody" drives four wheel drive toyota pickups.  There may
be other things that have "substitutes" but I can't think of them right now.
Safe public drinking water?  Everybody drinks bottled water.  
One thing though you sometimes have a society "eating"
itself, stealing copper phone cables and selling it for scrap.  I have also heard
of, (in the US) man-hole covers and guard railings being stolen for scrap, so
it is not just a third world problem.



Edited by franciscosan - 13 May 2015 at 05:25
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