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In Embedded Autonomy Evans argues that the structural form of state bureaucracy and its relation to private capital through social ties is a determining factor in the construction of comparative advantage. Evans builds on the intellectual tradition of institutionalism, as exemplified by Weber, Polanyi, Gershenkron, and Hirschman. In opposition to economic theories of development that discredit state involvement in the economy as counter-productive, institutionalist argue that state involvement in the economy is not only unavoidable but a prerequisite to modern capitalist economies (29). Further, institutionalists following Gerschenkron and Hirshman argue active state involvement is both directly responsible and requisite for industrialization—at least in the case of late developing countries (31).

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