October 27, 2007
Davis and Kruse on the Doing Business Project
Kevin Davis (NYU) and Michael Kruse (now at Hunton and Williams) have an excellent article in the forthcoming Fall 2007 issue of Law and Social Inquiry on the World Bank's Doing Business Project. The article, to quote the abstract, analyzes "the strengths and limitations of the [Doing Business] project, both as a scholarly enterprise and as a set of proposals for legal reform. Our analysis highlights the challenges associated with measuring legal variables in the face of legal complexity and uncertainty, measuring development when the concept of development is contested, tracing causal connections between law and development, and using scholarly research as a basis for legal reform." They encourage the next iteration of the project to "strive to be open to a broader range of theoretical perspectives on the features of the regulatory environment and social or economic outcomes that ought to be included in their database. A more pluralistic approach to the theoretical underpinnings of the project seems indispensable in light of the tremendous variety of theoretical claims that have been made about the relationship between law and development." This is a sophisticated critique that will resonate with many of the concerns of L & D scholars.
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