The State of State Capacity: a review of concepts, evidence and measures
AbstractWhat is state capacity and how does it affect development? The concept of state capacity acquired centrality during the late seventies and eighties, sponsored by a rather compact set of scholarly works. It later permeated through several disciplines and has now earned a place within the many governance dimensions affecting economic performance. The present article aims to provide a historical account of the evolution and usage of the state capacity concept, along with its various operationalizations. It examines in particular: a) the growing distance in the usage of the concept by different disciplinary and thematic fields; b) the process of `branching out' of the concept from restricted to more multidimensional definitions; c) the problems with construct validity and concept stretching, and d) the generalized lack of clarity that exists regarding the institutional sources of state capacity.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) in its series MERIT Working Papers with number 053.
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
state capacity; statebuilding; fiscal performance; bureaucracies; neopatrimonialism;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
- D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances
- H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
- H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
- O43 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-11-29 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2013-11-29 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
- NEP-HPE-2013-11-29 (History & Philosophy of Economics)
- NEP-PUB-2013-11-29 (Public Finance)
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