Throughout its history New Zealanders have worried about the fragile place of their nation in the world. Situated as the country is, far from overseas markets, and dependent to a high degree on a small range of farm exports the New Zealand economy has tended to have been swept along by global forces, largely beyond the efforts of New Zealanders to control their circumstances. This vulnerability has left New Zealanders with a degree of anxiety about whether they will be able to attain and maintain a standard of living comparable to those in other wealthy parts of the world. Despite this anxiety - and the periodic episodes of economic crisis - the story of New Zealand’s economic development over the past 150 years has largely been one of success and considerable achievement. The purpose of this book, therefore, is to introduce the reader to the story of New Zealand’s economic development since the middle years of the nineteenth century and the reason behind this success, as well as some of the periodic difficulties the country has faced.