Reviews

  • This book is more original and exciting than its predecessor...the highly influential Why Nations Fail

    Martin Wolf, Financial Times
  • One of the biggest paradoxes of political history is the trend, over the last 10,000 years, towards the development of strong centralized states, out of the former bands and tribes of no more than a few hundred people that formerly constituted all human societies. Without such states, it would be impossible for societies of millions to function. But-how can a powerful state be reconciled with liberty for the state's citizens? This great book provides an answer to this fundamental dilemma. You will find it as enjoyable as it is thought-provoking

    Jared Diamond, Professor of Geography at UCLA, Pulitzer-Prize-winning author of Guns, Germs, and Steel
  • Another outstanding, insightful book by Acemoglu and Robinson on the importance and difficulty of getting and maintaining a successful democratic state. Packed with examples and analysis, it is a pleasure to read

    Peter Diamond, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2010
  • Society and state need each other. Applying a global wealth of historical detail to a simple analytic framework, Acemoglu and Robinson build a powerful argument against the current opposing fashions of totalitarianism and the stateless society

    Sir Paul Collier, author of The Bottom Billion
  • The Narrow Corridor takes us on a fascinating journey, across continents and through human history, to discover the critical ingredient of liberty. It finds that it's up to each of us: that ingredient is our own commitments, as citizens, to support democratic values. In these times, there can be no more important message-nor any more important book

    George Akerlof, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2001
  • How should we view the current challenges facing our democracies? This brilliant, timely book offers a simple, powerful framework for assessing alternative forms of social governance. The analysis is a reminder that it takes vigilance to maintain a proper balance between the state and society-to stay in the 'narrow corridor'-and avoid falling either into statelessness or dictatorship

    Bengt Holmstrom, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2016
  • This is a very ambitious and thought provoking book that analyses many of today's key themes, and cleverly links them to history and evidence of many diverse places around the world

    Lord Jim O’Neill, author of The Growth Map
  • A well-written and argued treatise . . . indispensable reading

    Library Journal (starred review)
  • Liberty does not come easily. Many populations suffer from an ineffective state and are stuck in a cage of norms and traditions, of self-appointed chiefs, dispute adjudicators, guardians of souls and husbands turned tyrants. Others are subdued by a despotic Leviathan. In this highly original and gratifying fresco, Daron Acemoglu and Jim Robinson take us on a journey through civilizations, time and locations. Their narrow corridor depicts the constant and often unstable struggle of society to keep the Leviathan in check and of the Leviathan to weaken the cage of norms. A remarkable achievement that only they could pull off and that seems destined to repeat the stellar performance of Why Nations Fail

    Jean Tirole, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2014
  • This brilliant and insightful book could not be more timely. Across the world countries are wrestling with the tension between state and society. Populism of both Left and Right offers glib and dangerous answers. By contrast, Acemoglu and Robinson show that the narrow corridor to liberty depends on combining a strong capable state with a strong civic society. Not one or the other - both. This is the route to prosperity for all - but it is as they say 'no easy feat'

    Sir Michael Barber, author of How to Run a Government