For Teachers: Teachers' Guide

Conclusion: Issues for the 21st Century


The authors argue that there is a common pattern of economic development across East Asia in the twentieth century. This pattern of development is evident in China in the early part of the twentieth century China, in Taiwan, and then in contemporary China.

Some of the main features of this East Asian plan include an interventionist government that shapes the direction and development of the economy and the promotion of rural industry. In some cases, the East Asian model has also included the use of military power to achieve economic goals.

The governments of East Asia have also been open to borrowing from and adapting the policies of other states that the East Asian governments regard as promising (similar to the way in which European states borrowed and adapted the model of a civil service from China in earlier centuries.) In the 21st century, governments are particularly aware of economic policies of others and interested in assessing their outcomes.

Key Terms/Vocabulary

East Asian model
Xinjiang ("New Territories")

Study Questions

  1. What is the East Asian model of economic development?
  2. What have East Asian states done to secure the raw materials needed for economic development? How did U.S. policy after 1945 affect the means by which some East Asian states obtained their raw materials?
  3. Compare and contrast China’s relationship with its western territories, including Tibet, with U.S. relationships with America's Western frontier?

Discussion Questions

Investigate the current articles in the news on Chinese economic development. Do these articles and the current policies they discuss confirm the continuation of an "East Asian economic model of development" or do they reflect changes in this model?