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The Rise of Effective States in Europe

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  • Dincecco, Mark

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This review article examines the development of state capacity—the extractive and productive power of states— in European history. To explain the historical evolution of state capacity, I focus on the role of political innovations. I relate state capacity improvements to long-run economic growth and the establishment of twentieth-century welfare states. The article concludes with historical lessons for developing nations today. “In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.†James Madison (1788, p. 257)

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  • Dincecco, Mark, 2015. "The Rise of Effective States in Europe," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 75(3), pages 901-918, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:75:y:2015:i:03:p:901-918_00
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