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With clarity and depth, Gerard McCann explores the complex developments that have shaped Ireland's economic development, north and south, and led to recurring crises and instability. The Irish economy has been traditionally portrayed as a product of its political divisions and the colonial legacy, divided and analysed in terms of the hegemonic tensions that exist on the island. Influenced by these divisions, academics have tended to look at a two-region approach to economic development, without adequately acknowledging the interactive nature of the island economy as a source of the crises or as a solution to systemic divergence. McCann's definitive and dynamic history of the Irish economy circumvents conventional analyses and investigates the economic development of the island economy as a whole, highlighting where aggressive differentiation has been divisive and destabilising. He concludes by considering an alternative integrated and cohesive process of economic development.