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How did the rich countries really become rich? In this provocative new study, Ha-Joon Chang examines the great pressure on developing countries from the developed world to adopt certain "good policies" and "good institutions," seen today as necessary for economic development. Adopting an historical approach, Chang finds that the economic evolution of now-developed countries differed dramatically from the procedures that they now recommend to poorer nations. His conclusions are compelling and disturbing: that developed countries are attempting to "kick away the ladder" by which they have climbed to the top, thereby preventing developing counties from adopting policies and institutions that they themselves used.