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Determinants of Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Empirical Study

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  • Robert J. Barro

Abstract

Empirical findings for a panel of around 100 countries from 1960 to 1990 strongly support the general notion of conditional convergence. For a given starting level of real per capita GDP, the growth rate is enhanced by higher initial schooling and life expectancy, lower fertility, lower government consumption, better maintenance of the rule of law, lower inflation, and improvements in the terms of trade. For given values of these and other variables, growth is negatively related to the initial level of real per capita GDP. Political freedom has only a weak effect on growth but there is some indication of a nonlinear relation. At low levels of political rights, an expansion of these rights stimulates economic growth. However, once a moderate amount of democracy has been attained, a further expansion reduces growth. In contrast to the small effect of democracy on growth, there is a strong positive influence of the standard of living on a country's propensity to experience democracy.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 5698.

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Date of creation: Aug 1996
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5698

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  1. Aghion, P. & Howitt, P., 1989. "A Model Of Growth Through Creative Destruction," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 8904, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
  2. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 1993. "International Comparisons of Educational Attainment," NBER Working Papers 4349, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Alesina, Alberto & Summers, Lawrence H, 1993. "Central Bank Independence and Macroeconomic Performance: Some Comparative Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(2), pages 151-62, May.
  4. Barro, R.J., 1989. "Economic Growth In A Cross Section Of Countries," RCER Working Papers 201, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  5. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-56, November.
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  1. Regionalizare, guverne, fericire individuala
    by hymerion in dan popa on 2011-06-27 09:09:43
  2. Uma crônica argentina, 2001-2012
    by Drunkeynesian in The Drunkeynesian on 2012-06-04 20:34:00
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