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Political Economy in a Changing World

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  • Konstantin Sonin

    (New Economic School)

  • Georgy Egorov

    (Northwestern University)

  • Daron Acemoglu

    (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

Abstract

We provide a general framework for the analysis of the dynamics of institutional change (e.g., democratization), and how this interacts with (anticipated and unanticipated) changes in the distribution of political power and changes in economic structure. We focus on the Markov voting equilibria, which require that economic and political changes should take place if there exists a subset of players with the power to implement such changes and who will obtain higher expected continuation utility by doing so. Assuming that economic and political institutions as well as individual types can be ordered, and preferences and the distribution of political power satisfy a natural "single crossing" condition, we prove the existence of pure-strategy equilibrium, provide conditions for its uniqueness, and present a number of comparative static results that apply at this level of generality. We then use this framework to study the dynamics of political rights and repression in the presence of radical groups that can stochastically grab power depending on the distribution of political rights in society. We characterize the conditions under which the presence of radicals leads to repression, show a type of path dependence in politics resulting from radicals coming to power, and identify a novel strategic complementarity in repression.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2013 Meeting Papers with number 386.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed013:386

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References

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Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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  1. Powell, Robert, 2006. "War as a Commitment Problem," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 60(01), pages 169-203, January.
  2. Daron Acemoglu & Georgy Egorov & Konstantin Sonin, 2010. "Political Selection and Persistence of Bad Governments," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1511-1575, November.
  3. Jack Hirshleifer & Michele Boldrin & David K Levine, 2007. "The Slippery Slope of Concession," Levine's Working Paper Archive 618897000000001057, David K. Levine.
  4. Roger Lagunoff & William Jack, 2004. "Dynamic Enfranchisement," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 24, Econometric Society.
  5. Alberto Alesina & Ignazio Angeloni & Federico Etro, 2003. "International Unions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2001, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  6. Matthias Messner & Mattias K. Polborn, 2004. "Voting on Majority Rules," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 115-132.
  7. Salvador Barberà & Michael Maschler & Jonathan Shalev, 1998. "Voting for Voters: A Model of Electoral Evolution," Game Theory and Information, EconWPA 9804001, EconWPA.
  8. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521855266 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Daron Acemoglu & Georgy Egorov & Konstantin Sonin, 2008. "Coalition Formation in Non-Democracies," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(4), pages 987-1009.
  10. Mike Burkart & Klaus Wallner, 2000. "Club Enlargement: Early Versus Late Admittance," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0253, Econometric Society.
  11. Gregory, Paul R. & Schröder, Philipp J.H. & Sonin, Konstantin, 2011. "Rational dictators and the killing of innocents: Data from Stalin's archives," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 34-42, March.
  12. Bruno Strulovici, 2008. "Learning while voting: determinants of collective experimentation," Economics Papers 2008-W08, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  13. Salvador Barberà & Matthew O. Jackson, 2000. "Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions," Working Papers 57, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  14. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1998. "Sources of Inefficiency in a Representative Democracy: A Dynamic Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 139-56, March.
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