Raghu Rajan at the National Indian Students and Alumni Union, UKBreaking the Mold

The whole world has a stake in India’s future, and that future hinges on whether India can develop its economy and deliver for its population—now the world’s largest—while staying democratic. India’s economy has overtaken the United Kingdom’s to become the fifth-largest in the world, but it is still only one-fifth the size of China’s, and India’s economic growth is too slow to provide jobs for millions of its ambitious youth. Blocking India’s current path are intense global competition in low-skilled manufacturing, increasing protectionism and automation, and the country’s majoritarian streak in politics. In Breaking the Mold, Raghuram Rajan and Rohit Lamba show why and how India needs to blaze a new path if it’s to succeed.

India diverged long ago from the standard development model, the one followed by China—from agriculture to low-skilled manufacturing, then high-skilled manufacturing and, finally, services—by leapfrogging intermediate steps. India must not turn back now. Rajan and Lamba explain how India can accelerate growth by prioritizing human capital, expanding opportunities in high-skilled services, encouraging entrepreneurship, and strengthening rather than weakening its democratic traditions. It can chart a path based on ideas and creativity even at its early stage of development.

Filled with vivid examples and written with incisive candor, Breaking the Mold shows how India can break free of the stumbling blocks of the past and embrace the enormous possibilities of the future.

Raghuram G. Rajan is the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, former governor of the Reserve Bank of India, and former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund. His books include Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy (Princeton), winner of the Financial Times Business Book of the Year Award.