Professor Who Specialized in Third World Economies Dies

From Times Wire Services

Paul N. Rosenstein-Rodan, the international economist credited with coining the term “underdeveloped countries,” died Sunday.

Rosenstein-Rodan, a Boston University professor who specialized in the study of Third World economies, died after a heart attack at his home. He was 83.

Born in Krakow, Poland, Rosenstein-Rodan was considered a founder of developmental economics, which holds that economically developed countries can help less fortunate nations.

“He’s considered the economist who coined the term ‘underdeveloped countries,’ ” said university spokesman Kevin Carleton.


“His theoretical work in economics, developed during the 1920s and ‘30s, was applied during the post-World War II era, initially in Italy and India and later in Latin America,” Carleton said.

From 1947 to 1953, Rosenstein-Rodan worked for the Washington-based International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, or World Bank, as assistant director of the economics department and head of the economic advisory staff.

He also worked with the Alliance for Progress, which sought to aid economic development in the Western Hemisphere, from 1961 to 1966, and was an adviser to India’s late Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

Rosenstein-Rodan was director of the Center for Latin American Development Studies, which he founded at Boston University when he arrived in 1972.