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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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  1. Alesina, Alberto F & Angeloni, Ignazio & Etro, Federico, 2003. "International Unions," CEPR Discussion Papers 3913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Bruno Strulovici, 2008. "Learning while voting: determinants of collective experimentation," Economics Papers 2008-W08, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  3. Gregory, Paul & Schrôder, Philipp & Sonin, Konstantin, 2006. "Dictators, Repression and the Median Citizen: An “Eliminations Model” of Stalin’s Terror (Data from the NKVD Archives)," CEPR Discussion Papers 6014, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. William Jack & Roger Lagunoff, 2003. "Dynamic Enfrachisement," Working Papers gueconwpa~03-03-03, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  5. BARBERA, Salvador & MASCHLER, Michael & SHALEV, Jonathan, 1998. "Voting for voters: a model of electoral evolution," CORE Discussion Papers 1998022, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  6. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521855266 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. 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.
  8. Salvador BARBER?Author-Email: salvador.barbera@uab.es & Matthew O. JACKSON, 2003. "Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 596.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  9. Jack Hirshleifer & Michele Boldrin & David K Levine, 2009. "The Slippery Slope Of Concession," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(2), pages 197-205, 04.
  10. 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.
  11. Daron Acemoglu & Georgy Egorov & Konstantin Sonin, 2009. "Political Selection and Persistence of Bad Governments," NBER Working Papers 15230, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Klaus Wallner & Mike Burkart, 2000. "Club Enlargement: Early Versus Late Admittance," FMG Discussion Papers dp359, Financial Markets Group.
  13. Matthias Messner & Mattias K. Polborn, 2004. "Voting on Majority Rules," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 115-132.
  14. Powell, Robert, 2006. "War as a Commitment Problem," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 60(01), pages 169-203, January.
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