IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Is the relationship between aid and economic growth nonlinear?

  • Kourtellos, Andros
  • Tan, Chih Ming
  • Zhang, Xiaobo

In this paper, we investigate the relationship between foreign aid and growth using recently developed sample splitting methods that allow us to uncover evidence for the existence of heterogeneity and nonlinearity simultaneously. We also implement a new methodology that allows us to deal with model uncertainty in the context of these methods. We find some evidence that aid may have heterogeneous effects on growth across two growth regimes defined by ethnic fractionalization. In particular, countries that belong to a growth regime characterized by levels of ethnic fractionalization above a threshold value experience a negative partial relationship between aid and growth, while those in the regime with ethnic fractionalization below the threshold experience no growth effects from aid at all. Nevertheless, there exists substantial model uncertainty so that attempts to pin down the typology of these growth regimes as being decisively characterized by ethnic fractionalization remain inconclusive. When we account for model uncertainty, we find no evidence to suggest that the relationship between aid and growth is nonlinear. Overall, our results suggest that the partial effect of aid on growth is very likely to be negative although we cannot reject the hypothesis that aid has no effect on growth. In this sense, our findings suggest that aid is potentially counterproductive to growth with outcomes not meeting the expectations of donors.

(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0164-0704(07)00062-6
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Macroeconomics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 515-540

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:jmacro:v:29:y:2007:i:3:p:515-540
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622617

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Raghuram G. Rajan, 2005. "Aid and Growth: What Does The Cross-Country Evidence Really Show?," Working Papers id:54, eSocialSciences.
  2. Charles C. Chang & Eduardo Fernández-Arias & Luis Serven, 1998. "Measuring Aid Flows: A New Approach," Research Department Publications 4146, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  3. Carmen Fernandez & Eduardo Ley & Mark Steel, 1999. "Model uncertainty in cross-country growth regressions," Econometrics 9903003, EconWPA, revised 06 Oct 2001.
  4. Howitt, Peter & Mayer-Foulkes, David, 2005. "R&D, Implementation, and Stagnation: A Schumpeterian Theory of Convergence Clubs," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(1), pages 147-77, February.
  5. Romain Wacziarg & Karen Horn Welch, 2003. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," NBER Working Papers 10152, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Collier, Paul & Dehn, Jan, 2001. "Aid, shocks, and growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2688, The World Bank.
  7. Bai, Jushan, 1997. "Estimating Multiple Breaks One at a Time," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(03), pages 315-352, June.
  8. Hong, Yongmiao & Wang, Dabin & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2005. "Identifying Threshold Effects and Typologies in Economic Growth: A Panel Approach," 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI 19163, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  9. repec:rus:hseeco:70719 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Durlauf,S.N., 2003. "The convergence hypothesis after 10 years," Working papers 6, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  11. Wacziarg, Romain & Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Easterly, William & Kurlat, Sergio, 2002. "Fractionalization," Research Papers 1744, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  12. Galor, Oded & Moav, Omer, 2000. "Natural Selection and the Origin of Economic Growth," Arbetsrapport 2000:5, Institute for Futures Studies.
  13. Collier, Paul & Dollar, David, 2002. "Aid allocation and poverty reduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(8), pages 1475-1500, September.
  14. Oded_Galor, 2004. "From Stagnation to Growth:Unified Growth Theory," Working Papers 2004-15, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  15. William Easterly & Ross Levine & David Roodman, 2003. "New Data, New doubts: A Comment on Burnside and Dollar's "Aid, Policies, and Growth" (2000)," NBER Working Papers 9846, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 2004. "Aid, policy and growth in post-conflict societies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(5), pages 1125-1145, October.
  17. David N. Weil & Oded Galor, 2000. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 806-828, September.
  18. David Roodman, 2004. "The Anarchy of Numbers: Aid, Development, and Cross-country Empirics," Development and Comp Systems 0412003, EconWPA.
  19. William Easterly, 2003. "Can Foreign Aid Buy Growth?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 23-48, Summer.
  20. Durlauf, S.M. & Johnson, P.A., 1995. "Multiple Regimes and Cross-Country Growth Behavior," Working papers 9419r, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  21. Easterly, W & Levine, R, 1996. "Africa's Growth Tragedy : Policies and Ethnic Divisions," Papers 536, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  22. Burnside, Craig & Dollar, David, 1997. "Aid, policies, and growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1777, The World Bank.
  23. Bruce E. Hansen, 1996. "Sample Splitting and Threshold Estimation," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 319., Boston College Department of Economics, revised 12 May 1998.
  24. Robert J. Barro, 1989. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," NBER Working Papers 3120, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Durlauf, Steven N. & Kourtellos, Andros & Minkin, Artur, 2001. "The local Solow growth model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 928-940, May.
  26. Cohen-Cole,E.B. & Durlauf,S.N. & Rondina,G., 2005. "Nonlinearities in growth : from evidence to policy," Working papers 9, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  27. Arvind Subramanian & Raghuram Rajan, 2005. "What Undermines Aid’s Impact on Growth?," IMF Working Papers 05/126, International Monetary Fund.
  28. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Mellinger, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," CID Working Papers 1, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  29. repec:cup:etheor:v:13:y:1997:i:3:p:315-52 is not listed on IDEAS
  30. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 9305, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  31. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-437.
  32. Gernot Doppelhofer & Ronald I. Miller & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2000. "Determinants of Long-Term Growth: A Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates (BACE) Approach," NBER Working Papers 7750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  33. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1998. "Population, Technology and Growth: From the Malthusian Regime to the Demographic Transition," CEPR Discussion Papers 1981, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  34. Winford H. Masanjala & Chris Papageorgiou, 2004. "The Solow model with CES technology: nonlinearities and parameter heterogeneity," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(2), pages 171-201.
  35. William A. Brock & Steven N.Durlauf, 2000. "Growth Economics and Reality," NBER Working Papers 8041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  36. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A, 2002. "An African Success Story: Botswana," CEPR Discussion Papers 3219, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  37. Carl-Johan Dalgaard & Henrik Hansen & Finn Tarp, 2001. "On the Empirics of Foreign Aid and Growth," EPRU Working Paper Series 03-13, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics, revised Sep 2003.
  38. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2000. "International Data on Educational Attainment Updates and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  39. Hansen, Bruce E, 1996. "Inference When a Nuisance Parameter Is Not Identified under the Null Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 413-30, March.
  40. 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.
  41. Gonzalo, Jesus & Pitarakis, Jean-Yves, 2002. "Estimation and model selection based inference in single and multiple threshold models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 319-352, October.
  42. Caner, Mehmet & Hansen, Bruce E., 2004. "Instrumental Variable Estimation Of A Threshold Model," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(05), pages 813-843, October.
  43. Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Lisa CHAUVET, 1999. "Aid and Performance: A Reassessment," Working Papers 199910, CERDI.
  44. Oded Galor, 2005. "Unified Growth Theory," Development and Comp Systems 0504001, EconWPA.
  45. Paul Collier & David Dollar, 2004. "Development effectiveness: what have we learnt?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(496), pages F244-F271, 06.
  46. Costas Azariadis & Allan Drazen, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-526.
  47. David H. Romer & Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1999. "Does Trade Cause Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 379-399, June.
  48. Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Warner, 1995. "Economic Reform and the Process of Global Integration," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(1, 25th A), pages 1-118.
  49. Gallup, J.L. & Sachs, J.D. & Mullinger, A., 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," Papers 1, Chicago - Graduate School of Business.
  50. Raghuram G. Rajan & Arvind Subramanian, 2005. "What Undermines Aid's Impact on Growth?," NBER Working Papers 11657, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  51. Darren Lubotsky & Martin Wittenberg, 2006. "Interpretation of Regressions with Multiple Proxies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(3), pages 549-562, August.
  52. Hansen, Henrik & Tarp, Finn, 2001. "Aid and growth regressions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 547-570, April.
  53. Jeffrey D. Sachs, 2003. "Institutions Don't Rule: Direct Effects of Geography on Per Capita Income," NBER Working Papers 9490, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jmacro:v:29:y:2007:i:3:p:515-540. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.