In November 2023, Jonas Wolff, John Crabtree, and Francisco Durand have published their coauthored monograph with the title “Business Power and the State in the Central Andes – Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru in Comparison“. In their historical-comparative analysis, the authors examine how business actors have influenced the three states since the middle of the 20th century. They discuss three economic periods: the industrialization, the neoliberalism and the post-neoliberal phase. The comparison reveals similarities between the countries, but also differences – particularly in the balance of power between business elites and social movements: While business actors in Peru have consistently been able to maintain a hegemony of power, social movements in Bolivia have been able to exert massive influence. In Ecuador, the balance of power between the two groups is more equal. The authors analyze the advantages of these different models, the reasons for their change, as well as the consequences for the states and the populations.
Reviews of the monograph from the academic community are very positive, with Maxwell A. Cameron (University of British Colombia) describing it as a “must read“ for those interested in the political economy of Latin America. The book is available via website of the University of Pittsburgh Press.