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Why do Resource Abundant Countries Have Authoritarian Governments?

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  • Leonard Wantchekon

    (Yale University)

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    Abstract

    This article provides a theoretical and empirical investigation of the correlation between resource wealth and authoritarianism. Building on the rentier state literature, I argue that resource wealth facilitates the consolidation of an already established authoritarian government. Resource wealth also generates a breakdown of democratic regimes due to a combination of incumbency advantage, political instability, and political repression. There is strong empirical support for the theoretical argument. Controlling for GDP, human capital, income inequality and other possible determinants, I ?nd a robust and statistically signi?cant association between resource dependence measured by the ratio of fuel and mineral exports as a percentage of total exports and authoritarianism.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by African Finance and Economic Association in its journal Journal of African Development.

    Volume (Year): 5 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 145-176

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    Handle: RePEc:afe:journl:v:5:y:2002:i:2:p:145-176

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    Web page: http://afea.info/journal-of-african-development.html
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