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Extreme Bounds of Democracy

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Author Info

  • Martin Gassebner

    (ETH Zurich, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, Switzerland
    CESifo, Munich, Germany)

  • Michael J. Lamla

    (ETH Zurich, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, Switzerland)

  • James Raymond Vreeland

    ()
    (Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA)

Abstract

What determines the emergence and survival of democracy? The authors apply extreme bounds analysis to test the robustness of fifty-nine factors proposed in the literature, evaluating over three million regressions with data from 165 countries from 1976 to 2002. The most robust determinants of the transition to democracy are gross domestic product (GDP) growth (a negative effect), past transitions (a positive effect), and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development membership (a positive effect). There is some evidence that fuel exporters and Muslim countries are less likely to see democracy emerge, although the latter finding is driven entirely by oil-producing Muslim countries. Regarding the survival of democracy, the most robust determinants are GDP per capita (a positive effect) and past transitions (a negative effect). There is some evidence that having a former military leader as the chief executive has a negative effect, while having other democracies as neighbors has a reinforcing effect.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Peace Science Society (International) in its journal Journal of Conflict Resolution.

Volume (Year): 57 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 171-197

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Handle: RePEc:sae:jocore:v:57:y:2013:i:2:p:171-197

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Web page: http://pss.la.psu.edu/

Related research

Keywords: Democracy; dictatorship; transitions; political regime;

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References

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  1. Acemoglu, Daron & Ticchi, Davide & Vindigni, Andrea, 2008. "A theory of military dictatorships," POLIS Working Papers 100, Institute of Public Policy and Public Choice - POLIS.
  2. Jess Benhabib & Alejandro Corvalan & Mark M. Spiegel, 2011. "Reestablishing the Income-Democracy Nexus," NBER Working Papers 16832, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Potrafke, Niklas, 2012. "Islam and democracy," Munich Reprints in Economics 19273, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Martin Gassebner & Simon Luechinger, 2011. "Lock, Stock, and Barrel: A Comprehensive Assessment of the Determinants of Terror," CESifo Working Paper Series 3550, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Toke S. Aidt & Facundo Albornoz & Martin Gassebner, 2012. "The Golden Hello and Political Transitions," CESifo Working Paper Series 3957, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Niklas Potrafke, 2010. "Islam and Democracy," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2010-10, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
  4. Seo-Young Cho, 2012. "Modeling for Determinants of Human Trafficking," Economics of Security Working Paper Series 70, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  5. Friedrichsen, Jana & Zahn, Philipp, 2012. "Political Support in Hard Times: Do People Care about National Welfare?," Working Papers 12-12, University of Mannheim, Department of Economics.
  6. Andersen, Jørgen Juel & Aslaksen, Silje, 2013. "Oil and political survival," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 89-106.
  7. Cho, Seo-young & Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya, 2010. "Compliance for big brothers: An empirical analysis on the impact of the anti-trafficking protocol," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 118, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  8. Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Democracy and countries with Muslim majorities: a reply and update," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 154(3), pages 323-332, March.
  9. Cooray, Arusha & Potrafke, Niklas, 2011. "Gender inequality in education: Political institutions or culture and religion?," Munich Reprints in Economics 20110, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  10. Andersen, Jørgen Juel, 2011. "The form of government and fiscal dynamics," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 297-310, June.

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