Between 1984 and 1994 Thailand had the most rapid economic expansion in the world. This 1998 book offers an explanation of this successful record of economic growth in Thailand, and in Southeast Asia more generally. The book explains why Thai leaders adopted a market-driven strategy from the late 1950s, and also shows how the overseas Chinese in Thailand built on their community's social capital to overcome the market failures common to all developing countries. Unger takes an interdisciplinary approach, building on the literatures of social capital and embedded autonomy. He considers the unique organization of Thai society, and the impact this has had on the country's institutions, and their political and economic outcomes. The book includes detailed analysis of the financial and textile sectors, as well as the development of heavy industries and transportation infrastructure.