Allister Heath

The Bottom Billion

Wars, Guns & Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places


The Bodley Head 255pp £20 order from our bookshop

It is always a pleasure to discover Paul Collier’s latest thoughts. I have read far too many books on international relations that are turgid, repetitive and infuriating, a vehicle through which an angry academic can vent his rage at America and the West while displaying an abject ignorance of economics, statistics and reality. Not so Collier’s work, which is always illuminating and grounded in rigorous social science, including game theory. He is genuinely concerned with making the world a better place, and even when his thesis is ultimately unconvincing, as is the case this time, his ideas always help improve one’s own thinking. 

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