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David Morrison Lecture at Trent University to Answer: Are Some Countries Destined for Under-development?


Annual lecture in International Development on September 28 to discuss problems with economic policy

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Dr. Ha-Joon Chang, professor at the University of Cambridge, and a specialist in development economics, will deliver Trent University’s tenth annual David Morrison Lecture in International Development on Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. in Market Hall, with a talk titled, Are Some Countries Destined for Under-development? 

Economists have long tried to explain the poor economic performance in certain developing countries, especially the ones in Sub-Saharan Africa, in terms of factors like, geography, climate, history, and culture. In this lecture, Professor Chang argues that these explanations can only be interpreted as an attempt to ‘explain away’ why the many so-called ‘good’ economic policies have failed to deliver the expected results, leaving many countries struggling with national and personal poverty.

"We are delighted to bring Ha-Joon Chang to Trent and Peterborough. He has a world-class reputation for ground-breaking work that has challenged orthodox thinking in development economics," said professor emeritus Dr. David Morrison, who established the lecture series with his wife and retired Trent professor of Sociology, Dr. Alena Heitlinger. "Dr. Chang's insights will be enlightening for those who share a commitment to overcoming the global scourges of under-development, poverty and inequality."

Prof. Chang has published 16 authored books, including Kicking Away the Ladder, Bad Samaritans, 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism, and Economics: The User’s Guide. By 2018, his writings will have been translated and published in 41 languages and 44 countries. He was ranked ninth in the Prospect magazine’s World Thinkers 2014 poll.

About the David Morrison Lecture in International Development

Since 2007, the David Morrison Lecture in International Development has brought globally distinguished scholars and practitioners to the Trent and Peterborough communities who are renowned for the impact that their intellectual and applied work has had on international development studies. The lecture focuses on areas that are important to David Morrison's own contributions to the field, most notably approaches to reducing poverty and inequality, and achieving sustainable livelihoods in ways that promote social justice and respect the human and biophysical environment. The David Morrison Lecture in International Development is funded by a generous endowment made to Trent University in the name of David Morrison and Alena Heitlinger, with the aim of providing a focal point for discussing vital issues of our time from a critical interdisciplinary perspective.

About Trent University

One of Canada's top universities, Trent University was founded on the ideal of interactive learning that's personal, purposeful and transformative. Consistently recognized nationally for leadership in teaching, research and student satisfaction, Trent attracts excellent students from across the country and around the world. Here, undergraduate and graduate students connect and collaborate with faculty, staff and their peers through diverse communities that span residential colleges, classrooms, disciplines, hands-on research, co-curricular and community-based activities. Across all disciplines, Trent brings critical, integrative thinking to life every day. Today, Trent's unique approach to personal development through supportive, collaborative community engagement is in more demand than ever. Students lead the way by co-creating experiences rooted in dialogue, diverse perspectives and collaboration. In a learning environment that builds life-long passion for inclusion, leadership and social change, Trent's students, alumni, faculty and staff are engaged global citizens who are catalysts in developing sustainable solutions to complex issues. Trent's Peterborough campus boasts award-winning architecture in a breathtaking natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, just 90 minutes from downtown Toronto, while Trent University Durham Greater Toronto Area delivers a distinct mix of programming in the east GTA.


For more information contact:

Kate Weersink, media relations & strategic communications officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6180 or

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