Rethinking the emerging Post-Washington Consensus

Onis Z., Senses F.

DEVELOPMENT AND CHANGE, vol.36, no.2, pp.263-290, 2005 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 36 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2005
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/j.0012-155x.2005.00411.x
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index, Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.263-290


The objective of this article is to provide a critical assessment of the emerging Post-Washington Consensus (PWC), as the new influential vision in the development debate. The authors begin by tracing the main record of the Washington Consensus, the set of neoliberal economic policies propagated largely by key Bretton Woods institutions like the World Bank and the IMF, that penetrated into the economic policy agendas of many developing countries from the late 1970s onwards. They then outline the main tenets of the PWC, emerging from the shortcomings of that record and the reaction it created in the political realm. The authors accept that the PWC, in so far as it influences the actual practice of key Bretton Woods institutions, provides an improvement over the Washington Consensus. Yet, at the same time, they draw attention to the failure of the PWC, as reflected in current policy practice, to provide a sufficiently broad framework for dealing with key and pressing development issues such as income distribution, poverty and self-sustained growth.