Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.

Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this dissertation through interlibrary loan.

Dissertations that have an embargo placed on them will not be available to anyone until the embargo expires.

Author ORCID Identifier


Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program


Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Peter Skott

Second Advisor

Michael Ash

Third Advisor

Donald Tomaskovic-Devey

Subject Categories

Growth and Development


This dissertation is composed of three essays on growth and distribution in dual economies. The first of the essays explores short run implications of the relationship between hierarchical consumption preferences, redistribution, and structural change for the robustness of conclusions from neo-Kaleckian models. Integrating class-based heterogeneity to consumption patterns, inspired by notions of a hierarchy of wants, into a dual-sector model of a semi-industrialized economy generates qualitatively distinct results from those that typically follow from contemporary Kaleckian models, even when retaining the core features of the latter class of models. The results depend on the shock to income distribution emphasized and the specification of pricing.

The second essay investigates a puzzle of South Africa’s economy after apartheid: how the extension of democratic franchise was compatible with growing inequality. Testing for theories related to trade openness, ‘financialization’, unemployment, demand conditions, and relative price movements with time series methods, the paper emphasizes the role of the 2000s commodity price boom, an underexplored aspect in the literature on South Africa’s inequality.

The third essay, co-authored with Esra Nur Uğurlu, considers limitations to the application of Modern Money Theory (MMT) to underdevelopment problems, considering the long history of development thought emphasizing the relevance of capacity constraints and the consumption-investment trade-off. On the back of these classical development theories, this essay argues that considerably stimulating (government) consumption might be neither desirable nor feasible in contexts where a target for a high share of investment in output is necessitated by structural transformation objectives.


Available for download on Saturday, May 13, 2023