Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/2440/66907
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Type: Journal article
Title: Making a living on Flores, Indonesia: Why understanding surplus distribution is crucial to economic development
Author: Curnow, J.
Citation: Asia Pacific Viewpoint, 2008; 49(3):370-380
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
Issue Date: 2008
ISSN: 1360-7456
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Jayne Curnow
Abstract: Donors and aid agencies are now looking to strategies of pro-poor economic growth to raise living standards in developing countries. I critically examine how particular conceptualisations of economy and economic development shape the broader context within which pro-poor growth approaches are implemented by governments and development agencies. While pro-poor growth may expand a national economy, surplus will be distributed in a community and among individuals according to culturally specific logics. To exemplify this point I discuss the community economy of Bomolo on the remote, rural island of Flores, Indonesia. The Ngadha people of Bomolo are identified by the Indonesian state, religious organisations and development agencies as lacking and in need of economic development. Yet in Bomolo, gambling, although illegal and antithetical to development, is fantastically popular, and large amounts of cash surplus are spent on this popular pastime. I argue for more attention to the issue of surplus – the outcome of pro-poor growth. In particular, I propose that surplus distribution is a crucial yet underdeveloped component of the growth equation.
Keywords: community economy; economic development; gambling; Indonesia; pro-poor growth; surplus distribution
Rights: © 2008 The Author. Journal compilation © 2008 Victoria University of Wellington
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8373.2008.00384.x
Appears in Collections:Anthropology & Development Studies publications

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