Whenever I think about the challenge of reorganizing Jakarta, I recall Hernando de Soto’s “Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else”. De Soto’s book examines the conversion of capital and argues that at the heart of the process is the right legal and property rights system for a given society. De Soto argues that most people opt for extralegal arrangements because the legal alternative is too costly and do not reflect the local concept of property ownership.

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