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Study on Human Capital in the Rise and Fall of Spain(Special Issue, No 11, 2016)


By Li Ang, Member of the Research Team on “The Waxing and Waning of a State and the Role of Human Capital” of DRC

Research Report, Special Issue, No 11, 2016 (Total NO 1486)

Abstract: Spain boasted second to none among European countries during the 15th and 16th centuries in overall national strength, but remained prosperous for merely a short time. During such a fleeting process of rise and fall, the direct or indirect role of human capital cannot be ignored. Talents in science and technology, military and political sectors kept springing up and helped lay a significant foundation for Spain to pursue economic expansion, industrial prosperity and optimization of social labor division system in a short term. However,Spanish backward industrial structure and economic operation forms, the rigid feudalism and conservative imperial power awareness and highly frequent military expansion had caused consistent political turbulence and intranquilityas well as difficulty in production and provisions, which in turn exhausted the human capital advantage accumulated in the primary stage. As regards human capital building, China could draw somelessons from Spain in terms of the role played byhuman capital in the swift rise and fall of the country.

Key words: human capital, the rise and fall of a nation, implications, Spain