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The development of nations : temporal relationships from an ecological perspective

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Title: The development of nations : temporal relationships from an ecological perspective
Authors: Perry, Paul Edward
Keywords: Human ecology
Economic development -- Mathematical models
Issue Date: 1976
Abstract: This study involves an examination of the temporal relationships between a number of different dimensions related to the process of the development of nations. Duncan's ecological complex serves as the basic framework for this largely inductive work. The ecological complex is comprised of four general realms: population, organization, environment, and technology. Together these four realms are viewed as comprising an interdependent system, where development occurs as a consequence of the continual process of adjustment between the four realms. Although the concept of development clearly involves a process of change over time, most cross-national studies have relied upon static data. The most unique aspect of this study involves the use of data from several points in time. This permits inferences of time order between several development dimensions, and as such represents important information notably lacking in the existing literature. This study has operationalized 63 variables representative of different aspects of the four parts of the ecological complex for 57 nations at three points in time: circa 1950, 1960, and 1970. From this data ten composite indices (dimensions) were derived through the use of factor analysis. The ten indices were examined in terms of the strength of their mutual associations. Seven of the ten were found to be highly associated with each other. Each pair among the seven indices were then cross-plotted. In some instances the plots revealed curvilinear trends of development, such that it was possible to infer time order between certain indices, where major changes in some indices were found to occur prior to major changes in others. Declines in the index of mortality were found to generally precede changes in the other six indices. Declines in the index of population growth, and gains in the indices of the division of labor, urbanization, and agricultural production, were found to generally precede major gains in the indices of material technology and trade. The relationships between the seven indices were then examined for spuriousness, using all possible combinations of first-order partial correlations. Several of the relationships were found to be essentially spurious when other indices among the seven were controlled. From the analysis involving association, time order, and spuriousness, two models were built describing the interrelationships between the seven indices as a whole. As such the models represent at least some of the interrelationships involved in the process of development. The structure of the models appear to support demographic transition theory. They also suggest that changes in the division of labor play an important role in the process of development. There are also certain implications for the concept of over-urbanization. Overall, the results of this study illustrate at least part of the system of temporal interrelationships involved in the process of development. It is a multidimensional view of development that clearly shows that the process involves a sequence of changes in a number of distinct areas. The results also suggest that the process of development tends to be comparable over time. That is, the developmental experiences of contemporary less-developed nations appear to be quite similar to the earlier experiences of the more-developed nations.
Description: Typescript.
Bibliography: leaves 155-161.
ix, 161 leaves ill
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Sociology

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