31
Common Characteristics of the Four Late Industrializers

The experiences of the four case countries exhibit at least the following common characteristics that may have been associated with 'mechanisms' of success in state-led industrialization. The subsequent discussion will then present an attempt to make sense of these observations: (1) In all of the four countries, the state has been very powerful and interventionist, so that the practical organization of new investment has at times resembled that of the planned economies. (2) All have been extremely organized, corporatist economies where strategic decisions of economic and industrial policy have been taken in concert between the state and organized interest groups of business and labour. (3) In all of them, and in spite of the extensive étatist planning, the state and the political establishment have been ultimately committed to the liberal market order and respect of private property as a principle. (4) In all of them, for various historical reasons, the state has been politically strong and has also been endowed with a large and competent bureaucracy. (5) In international politics, all of them were situated in a contested borderzone between the two ideological blocks of capitalism and communism and all of them were confronted with a threat of loss of sovereignty. (6) In all of them, however, the outcome of World War II had shaken or disrupted the established organization of interests groups, so that a new corporatist network had to be built in the aftermath of the war.

Thus, in a nutshell, we ask whether these observations would lend support to a rudimentary 'theory' which predicts that state intervention and even planning can be very successful, in particular if it does not imply that the long-run incentives for private entrepreneurship are weakened; it is taken care of by a competent and highly meritocratic bureaucracy which sets its policy independently of organized interest groups and does not aim at maximizing the revenues of the individual bureaucrats; the state

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