Does Libertè = Egalité? A Survey of the Empirical Links between Democracy and Inequality with Some Evidence on the Transition Economies
AbstractThe effect of the distribution of political rights on income inequality has been studied both theoretically and empirically. This paper reviews the existing literature and, in particular, the available empirical evidence. Our reading of the literature suggests that formal exclusion from the political process through restrictions on the voting franchise appears to have caused a high degree of economic inequality, and democratization in the form of franchise expansion especially for women, has more often than not led to an expansion in redistribution, at least in the small sample of episodes studied. In a less pronounced way, albeit more emphatically compared to the ambiguous results of the earlier research, the recent evidence indicates an inverse relationship between other measures of democracy, based on civil liberties and political rights, and inequality. The transition experience of the East European countries, however, seems to some extent to go against these conclusions. This, in turn, opens possible new vistas for research, namely the need to incorporate the length of democratic experience and the role played by ideology and social values. Copyright Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 2004.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Economic Surveys.
Volume (Year): 18 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 (09)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0950-0804
Other versions of this item:
- Gradstein. Mark & Milanovic, Branko, 2002. "Does Liberte = Egalite ? A survey of the empirical links between democracy and inequality with some evidence on the transition economies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2875, The World Bank.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Klaus Deininger & Lyn Squire, 1996.
"A New Data Set Measuring Income Inequality,"
CEMA Working Papers
512, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Atkinson,Anthony Barnes & Micklewright,John, 1992.
"Economic Transformation in Eastern Europe and the Distribution of Income,"
Cambridge University Press, number 9780521438827, December.
- Atkinson,Anthony Barnes & Micklewright,John, 1992. "Economic Transformation in Eastern Europe and the Distribution of Income," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521433297, December.
- Saint-Paul, G. & Verdier, T., 1991.
"Education, Democracy and growth,"
DELTA Working Papers
91-27, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
- Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1994. "The Political Economy of Growth: A Critical Survey of the Recent Literature," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 8(3), pages 351-71, September.
- John R. Lott & Jr. & Lawrence W. Kenny, 1999. "Did Women's Suffrage Change the Size and Scope of Government?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(6), pages 1163-1198, December.
- Justman, Moshe & Gradstein, Mark, 1999. "The Industrial Revolution, Political Transition, and the Subsequent Decline in Inequality in 19th-Century Britain," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 109-127, April.
- Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2001.
"A Theory of Political Transitions,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 938-963, September.
- Daron Acemoglu & James Robinson, 1999. "A Theory of Political Transitions," Working papers 99-26, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Robinson, James A, 1999. "A Theory of Political Transitions," CEPR Discussion Papers 2277, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- John F. Helliwell, 1994. "Empirical Linkages Between Democracy and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 4066, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Easterly, William & Rebelo, Sergio, 1993.
"Fiscal policy and economic growth: An empirical investigation,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 417-458, December.
- Easterly, William & Rebelo, Sérgio, 1994. "Fiscal Policy and Economic Growth: An Empirical Investigation," CEPR Discussion Papers 885, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- William Easterly & Sergio Rebelo, 1994. "Fiscal Policy and Economic Growth: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 4499, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Meltzer, Allan H & Richard, Scott F, 1981. "A Rational Theory of the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 914-27, October.
- Alberto Alesina & Dani Rodrik, 1991.
"Distributive Politics and Economic Growth,"
NBER Working Papers
3668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Bassett, William F. & Burkett, John P. & Putterman, Louis, 1999. "Income distribution, government transfers, and the problem of unequal influence," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 207-228, June.
- Hongyi Li & Lyn Squire & Heng-fu Zou, 1998.
"Explaining International and Intertemporal Variations in Income Inequality,"
CEMA Working Papers
73, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Li, Hongyi & Squire, Lyn & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998. "Explaining International and Intertemporal Variations in Income Inequality," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(446), pages 26-43, January.
- Persson, T. & Tabellini, G., 1993.
"Is Inequality Harmful for Growth,"
537, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
- Rodrik, Dani, 1998.
"Democracies Pay Higher Wages,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
1776, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Husted, Thomas A & Kenny, Lawrence W, 1997. "The Effect of the Expansion of the Voting Franchise on the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(1), pages 54-82, February.
- Gouveia, Miguel & Masia, Neal A, 1998. " Does the Median Voter Model Explain the Size of Government?: Evidence from the States," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 97(1-2), pages 159-77, October.
- Adam Przeworski & Fernando Limongi, 1993. "Political Regimes and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 51-69, Summer.
- Hongyi Li & Lyn Squire & Tao Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 1999.
"A Data Set on Income Distribution,"
CEMA Working Papers
575, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2000.
"Why Did The West Extend The Franchise? Democracy, Inequality, And Growth In Historical Perspective,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 115(4), pages 1167-1199, November.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Robinson, James A, 1998. "Why did the West Extend the Franchise? Democracy, Inequality and Growth in Historical Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 1797, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Perotti, Roberto, 1996. " Growth, Income Distribution, and Democracy: What the Data Say," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 149-87, June.
- Milanovic, Branko, 1999. "Do more unequal countries redistribute more? does the median voter hypothesis hold?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2264, The World Bank.
- Perotti, Roberto, 1993. "Political Equilibrium, Income Distribution, and Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 755-76, October.
- Becker, Gary S, 1983. "A Theory of Competition among Pressure Groups for Political Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 371-400, August.
- Heshmati, Almas, 2004.
"Continental and Sub-Continental Income Inequality,"
IZA Discussion Papers
1271, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Tausch, Arno, 2009.
"Ist die Globalisierung fit für das soziale Europa?
[Is Globalization fit for Social Europe?]," MPRA Paper 14264, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Suresh Naidu, 2012. "Suffrage, Schooling, and Sorting in the Post-Bellum U.S. South," NBER Working Papers 18129, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Savoia, Antonio & Easaw, Joshy & McKay, Andrew, 2010. "Inequality, Democracy, and Institutions: A Critical Review of Recent Research," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 142-154, February.
- Drosdowski, Thomas, 2005. "Democracy Deficits, Inequality and Pollution. A Politico-Economic Analysis," Diskussionspapiere der Wirtschaftswissenschaftlichen FakultÃ¤t der Leibniz UniversitÃ¤t Hannover dp-323, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
- Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth, 2007. "Within and Between Gender Disparities in Income and Education Benefits from Democracy," IZA Discussion Papers 3221, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Ewig, Christina & Palmucci, Gastón A., 2012. "Inequality and the Politics of Social Policy Implementation: Gender, Age and Chile’s 2004 Health Reforms," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(12), pages 2490-2504.
- Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth, 2008. "Understanding Low Average Returns to Education in Africa: The Role of Heterogeneity across Education Levels and the Importance of Political and Economic Reforms," IZA Discussion Papers 3766, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Roland Hodler & Simon Luechinger & Alois Stutzer, 2012. "The Effects of Voting Costs on the Democratic Process and Public Finances," Working papers 2012/02, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
- Christopher Gerry & Tomasz Mickiewicz, 2006. "Inequality, Fiscal Capacity and the Political Regime: Lessons from the Post-Communist Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp831, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
- Drosdowski, Thomas, 2006. "On the Link Between Democracy and Environment," Diskussionspapiere der Wirtschaftswissenschaftlichen FakultÃ¤t der Leibniz UniversitÃ¤t Hannover dp-355, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.