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Institutional reversals and economic growth: Palestine 1516–1948

  • SCHEIN, ANDREW

This study examines the type and quality of institutions in Palestine and the correlation between the institutions and economic growth in Palestine from 1516 to 1948. Initially in the 16th century, with the Ottoman conquest of the area, institutions in Palestine involved de facto private user-rights. The level of expropriation by elites was low, and this enabled the people to develop the lands that they had acquired the right to cultivate. In the 17th and 18th centuries, with the exception of the Galilee in the middle of the 18th century, institutions became extractive due to tax farming, rapacious governors and Bedouin raids. From the middle of the 19th century until 1948, there was a second reversal back to private property institutions, first slowly until the First World War, and then more rapidly under the British Mandate after the First World War. When there were private property institutions the economy prospered, while when there were extractive institutions, the economy stagnated.

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Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal Journal of Institutional Economics.

Volume (Year): 8 (2012)
Issue (Month): 01 (March)
Pages: 119-141

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jinsec:v:8:y:2012:i:01:p:119-141_00
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