A conclusion is presented in Chapter 7, which is divided into three parts. The first section discusses the theoretical implications of the book’s findings regarding the left in Latin America, the politics of economic reforms, and party systems. The second section discusses the consequences of the left’s economic policies from a variety of perspectives. It evaluates governments’ performance regarding economic growth, poverty, and inequality, and finds that poverty alleviation has been the left’s single most important economic achievement. The third section focuses on the implications of party system institutionalization for economic performance and democracy. It concludes that low levels of institutionalization have detrimental effects on the sustainability of economic growth and horizontal accountability.
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