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It's the rents, stupid! The political economy of the resource curse

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  • Kolstad, Ivar
  • Wiig, Arne

Abstract

A number of studies suggest that natural resources can have a negative impact on the developing prospects of countries. Empirical results suggest that political economy models of patronage and rent-seeking are central to understanding why such a resource curse arises. In other words, the resource curse is created by certain resource rents leading to dysfunctional behaviour. This article introduces the term impartiality enhancing institutions to structure policy debates by distinguishing conditions under which negative effects of resources can be mitigated. Moreover, it is argued that viewing institutions as an equilibrium outcome has implications for the analysis of institutional change. Policy initiatives that do not promote the impartiality of institutions, nor attend to the underlying interests and incentives keeping a bad institutional equilibrium in place, will not help lift the resource curse.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Policy.

Volume (Year): 37 (2009)
Issue (Month): 12 (December)
Pages: 5317-5325

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Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:37:y:2009:i:12:p:5317-5325

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/enpol

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Keywords: Resource curse Institutions;

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Cited by:
  1. Anders Jensen, 2011. "State-Building in Resource-Rich Economies," Atlantic Economic Journal, International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 39(2), pages 171-193, June.
  2. Fuinhas, José Alberto & Marques, António Cardoso, 2013. "Rentierism, energy and economic growth: The case of Algeria and Egypt (1965–2010)," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 1165-1171.
  3. Massimiliano Mazzanti & Roberto Zoboli, 2012. "A Political Economy Approach to Resource Taxation: Weak Sustainability, Revenue Recycling and Regional Planning," Working Papers 201202, University of Ferrara, Department of Economics.
  4. Hansen, Christian P. & Lund, Jens F., 2011. "The political economy of timber taxation: The case of Ghana," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(8), pages 630-641, October.
  5. Wiig, Arne & Kolstad, Ivar, 2010. "Multinational corporations and host country institutions: A case study of CSR activities in Angola," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 178-190, April.
  6. Sarmidi, Tamat & Siong Hook, Law & Jafari, Yaghoob, 2012. "Resource curse: new evidence on the role of institutions," MPRA Paper 37206, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Kolstad, Ivar & Wiig, Arne, 2012. "Testing The Pearl Hypothesis: Natural resources and trust," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 358-367.
  8. Angeliki N. Menegaki, 2013. "An Antidote to the Resource Curse: The Blessing of Renewable Energy," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 3(4), pages 321 - 332.
  9. Verbruggen, Aviel & Al Marchohi, Mohamed, 2010. "Views on peak oil and its relation to climate change policy," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(10), pages 5572-5581, October.

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