In a world seemingly surfing a wave of unprecedented affluence, it is sobering to be reminded that only thirty out of nearly two hundred countries can really be classified as advanced industrialized countries. Eighty per cent of the world's population lives in the developing world. This popular, concise introduction scrutinises the developing world, its varied political institutions and the key social, economic and environmental issues at the heart of contemporary debates. Wide-ranging and clearly written, Politics and Society in the Developing World begins by providing a brisk survey of the major theoretical and methodological interpretations of the social impact of development. It then details the factors which determine the parameters of the developing world before moving on to examine its infrastructure and the crises currently facing it. The book also covers the social and economic contexts of developing societies, the international arena and its impact on the developing world, state-building and the tension between dictatorship and democratization. The book focuses on four policy areas: aid, trade, tourism and the environment.