The text begins with an overview of the economic policies in Zimbabwe since Independence in 1980, describing the shift away from pro-poor economic policies and the struggles between the urban elite and impoverished rural people, often on racial lines. Subsequent chapters provide an analysis on the country's growth record and pattern of income distribution, and report on a survey of welfare history of 14,000 households. Though listed as co-authors, Jenkins (economics, U. of Oxford and London School of Economics and Political Science) is the main author, contributing six of the nine chapters and co-authoring the introduction and conclusion. Knight (economics, U. of Oxford) wrote the chapter on labor market policies
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