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Knowing the right person in the right place: political connections and resistance to change

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  • Giovanni Prarolo

    (University of Bologna)

  • Carlotta Berti Ceroni

    (University of Bologna)

  • Giorgio Bellettini

    (Universtiy of Bologna)

Abstract

We develop a political economy model of Schumpeterian growth with entry where excessive red tape and bureaucracy are used strategically by the incumbent politician to acquire incumbency advantage. By setting sufficiently high red tape, the politician induces the monopolist to invest in networking, as bureaucratic costs can be reduced through personal relationships developed with the incumbent politician, and determines a static gain for voters in case of re-election. Our model generates political equilibria where the incumbent politician secures re-election, and that involve either perpetual upgrading or technological inertia. Although blocked entry implies a dynamic loss, the latter equilibrium is supported by forward-looking voters who value the static gain associated to the status quo. The model provides a possible explanation for the persistence of inefficient democracies and political barriers to technology adoption, where these reflect shared rather than conflicting interests.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2012 Meeting Papers with number 976.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:976

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  1. Antonio Merlo & Vincenzo Galasso & Massimiliano Landi & Andrea Mattozzi, 2008. "The Labor Market of Italian Politicians," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 89, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  2. Prantl, Susanne & Howitt, Peter & Griffith, Rachel & Blundell, Richard & Aghion, Philippe, 2004. "Entry and Productivity Growth: Evidence From Microlevel Panel Data," Scholarly Articles 4481510, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Acemoglu, D. & Ticchi, D. & Vindigni, A., 2006. "Emergence and Persistence of Inefficient States," Papers 12-02-2006, Princeton University, Research Program in Political Economy.
  4. Zilibotti, Fabrizio & Redding, Stephen & Burgess, Robin & Aghion, Philippe, 2005. "Entry Liberalization and Inequality in Industrial Performance," Scholarly Articles 4481508, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2002. "Distance to Frontier, Selection, and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 9066, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Bridgman, Benjamin R. & Livshits, Igor D. & MacGee, James C., 2007. "Vested interests and technology adoption," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 649-666, April.
  7. Eric Maskin & Jean Tirole, 1997. "Markov Perfect Equilibrium, I: Observable Actions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1799, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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