Kenneth Sokoloff

University of California, Los Angeles

Kenneth Sokoloff, Professor of Economics at the University of California, Los Angeles, will work on a comparative economic history of the Americas. He will argue that factors of production (e.g. climate and population) predisposed Caribbean colonies - which were well suited for specialization in crops that could be produced cheaply on large slave plantations - to more inequality than existed in northern colonies. His hypothesis is that those societies with greater equality tended to develop institutions that offered citizens access to political influence and investment opportunities, thereby opening the doors for industrialization and concomitant economic growth in the nineteenth century.


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