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Political Ambiguity and Economic Development: The MENA Countries Pre-Commercial Procurement of Innovation

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Author Info

  • Juliane Brach

    (The Knowledge Company, Germany and Maastricht School of Management, The Netherlands, Contact: jbrach@knowledgecompany.eu)

  • Willem Spanjers

    (Kingston University, United Kingdom and Rimini Center for Economic Analysis, Italy. Contact: w.spanjers@kingston.ac.uk)

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    Abstract

    In this paper we provide a coherent framework for analyzing the impact of incalculable political risk, i.e. political ambiguity, on economic development and the choice of development strategy. Using indicators for the levels of internal and external political ambiguity, we analyze the growth paths of MENA countries based on annual data for the period from 1980 to 2008. Succession rules for governments are our indicator for internal political ambiguity, the potential for becoming involved in disruptive international conflicts serves as an indicator for external political ambiguity. Our results show that political ambiguity has a negative impact on both the level of per capita GDP and its growth. Our theoretical model suggests that political ambiguity biases development strategies, leading to an underinvestment in intensive sources of growth.

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    File URL: http://web2.msm.nl/RePEc/msm/wpaper/MSM-WP2012-39.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2012
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Maastricht School of Management in its series Working Papers with number 2012/39.

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    Length: 40 pages
    Date of creation: Oct 2012
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:msm:wpaper:2012/39

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    Related research

    Keywords: economic development; decision making; ambiguity; development strategy; political economy; Middle East and North Africa;

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    1. Grant, Simon & Chateauneuf, A. & Eichberger, J., 2002. "Choice under Uncertainty with the Best and Worst in Mind: Neo-additive Capacities," Working Papers 2002-10, Rice University, Department of Economics.
    2. Hausmann, Ricardo & Rodrik, Dani, 2002. "Economic Development as Self-Discovery," Working Paper Series rwp02-023, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
    3. Soete, Luc & Freeman, Chris, 2007. "Developing science, technology and innovation indicators: what we can learn from the past," MERIT Working Papers 001, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    4. Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 1999. "The big push, natural resource booms and growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 43-76, June.
    5. Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2001. "Trade, growth, and poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2615, The World Bank.
    6. Fagerberg, Jan & Srholec, Martin & Verspagen, Bart, 2009. "Innovation and Economic Development," MERIT Working Papers 032, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    7. Jürgen Eichberger & David Kelsey, 1999. "E-Capacities and the Ellsberg Paradox," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 46(2), pages 107-138, April.
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