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Resource Curse or Not: A Question of Appropriability

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  • Anne D. Boschini
  • Jan Pettersson
  • Jesper Roine

Abstract

Whether natural resources are good or bad for a country's development are shown to depend on the interaction between institutional setting and, crucially, the types of resources possessed by the country. Some natural resources are, for economical and technical reasons, more likely to cause problems such as rent‐seeking and conflicts than others. This potential problem can, however, be countered by good institutional quality. In contrast to the traditional resource curse hypothesis, we show the impact of natural resources on economic growth to be non‐monotonic in institutional quality, and increasingly so for certain types of resources. In particular, countries rich in minerals are cursed only if they have low‐quality institutions, while the curse is reversed if institutions are sufficiently good. Furthermore, if countries are rich in diamonds and precious metals, these effects—both positive and negative—are larger.

Suggested Citation

  • Anne D. Boschini & Jan Pettersson & Jesper Roine, 2007. "Resource Curse or Not: A Question of Appropriability," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 109(3), pages 593-617, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:scandj:v:109:y:2007:i:3:p:593-617
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9442.2007.00509.x
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
    • O57 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • N50 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - General, International, or Comparative

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