Summary of Joyless Growth in China, India and the United States

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In 2018, economic growth stood at a robust 6.5% in China, a strong 7.5% in India and a respectable 3% in the United States. But instead of basking in their good economic fortunes, the citizens of these populous countries are entangled in factious domestic politics. In this thought-provoking analysis for policy experts and executives, economist Indermit Gill offers his perspectives on the pervasive atmosphere of discontent. Different demons beset each nation, clouding otherwise sanguine economic prospects.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why the United States, China and India influence the world’s economic tone, and
  • Why healthy economic growth in these countries isn’t making their citizens happy.

About the Author

Indermit Gill is the director of the Duke Center for International Development at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University.



China, India and the United States, combined, account for 40% of the world’s population and 40% of global GDP, so what happens in these nations influences sentiment all over the world. On the surface, the economic growth rates in all three countries are delivering prosperity. But that good fortune is not bringing happiness, at least not in the major capitals of Beijing, New Delhi and Washington, DC – characterized as upper-middle income, lower-middle income and high-income metropolises, respectively. Their increasing wealth is fomenting political discord...

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