Date of Award

Spring 2007

Degree Type



Dr. Amir Idris


Since Ghana gained its independence in 1957, its leaders have struggled to utilize development tactics that are both sustainable and address the most important economic issues facing a developing country, such as poverty, infrastructure building, inflation, and macroeconomic stability. Balancing these priorities has proven difficult for the various Ghanaian regimes that have ruled the country since independence. The complexities facing a developing country with a fragile economy often require difficult decisions that prove painful for the poorest and most marginalized individuals in society. Often, the poor must sacrifice subsidized food and other government services as economic reform programs aimed at macroeconomic stabilization are implemented. Efforts to cut down on inflation, reduce government ownership, and decrease tariffs and subsides cam help generate economic growth and create a healthier environment for trade and the free movement of capital. However, many of these structural adjustment programs and economic reform movements have been woefully inadequate in addressing the problems of deep poverty that still afflict rural areas throughout the nation. In fact, evidence indicates that many of these development strategies actually increase the gap between rich and poor and push some groups into deeper poverty.