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Botswana as a Role Model for Country Success

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  • Robinson, James A.
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    Abstract

    I argue that the economic success of Botswana can be explained by the historical development of its institutions which is related to the trajectory of the Tswana states over the past 200 years. These institutions created a much more stable and accountable government than elsewhere in Africa after independence with the desire and incentive to adopt good economic policies. There are two main lessons from this experience. The first is how successful an African economy can become using simple orthodox well-understood policies. The second is that successful development in Africa will be helped by a focus on the development of state institutions. Though Botswana inherited different institutions from elsewhere, it also built on these, in particular trying to create a national identity and to continually modernize and adapt institutions. There are many lessons for other African countries from these policy choices.

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    File URL: http://www.wider.unu.edu/stc/repec/pdfs/rp2009/RP2009-40.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) in its series Working Paper Series with number UNU-WIDER Research Paper RP2009/40.

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    Length: 17
    Date of creation: 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:rp2009-40

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    Keywords: governance; patrimonialism; state formation;

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    1. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A & Yared, Pierre, 2005. "Income and Democracy," CEPR Discussion Papers 5273, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Kaufmann, Daniel & Kraay, Aart & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 1999. "Governance matters," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2196, The World Bank.
    3. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
    4. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521855266 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. James A. Robinson & Q. Neil Parsons, 2006. "State Formation and Governance in Botswana," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 15(1), pages 100-140, April.
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    Cited by:
    1. Naudé, Wim, 2010. "Development Progress in sub-Saharan Africa: Lessons from Botswana, Ghana, Mauritius and South Africa," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Working Paper W, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    2. Abdullahi Ahmed & Andrew Hulten, 2014. "Financial Globalization in Botswana and Nigeria: A Critique of the Thresholds Paradigm," The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 177-203, June.

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