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Explaining divergence in the long-term effects of precolonial centralization on access to public infrastructure services in Nigeria

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  • Archibong, Belinda

Abstract

Although the literature has discussed the benefits of precolonial centralization for development in Africa, the findings and the mechanisms provided do not explain the heterogeneity in access to public services of formerly centralized regions. Using new survey data from Nigeria, a significant negative association between precolonial centralization and access to certain public services is observed. While the mechanisms driving these patterns are complex, I use historical evidence to suggest that the negative association may be partly driven by centralized regions whose leaders failed to comply with the autocratic federal regime, and whose jurisdictions may have been subsequently punished by underinvestment in these services, with impacts lasting until today. The results are robust to extensive controls and multiple empirical tests to differentiate among alternative explanations for the finding.

Suggested Citation

  • Archibong, Belinda, 2019. "Explaining divergence in the long-term effects of precolonial centralization on access to public infrastructure services in Nigeria," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 121(C), pages 123-140.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:121:y:2019:i:c:p:123-140
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2019.04.014
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    Cited by:

    1. Leone Walters & Carolyn Chisadza & Matthew W. Clance, 2020. "The Effect of Colonial and Pre-Colonial Institutions on Contemporary Education in Africa," Working Papers 2020102, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    2. Nicole Stoelinga, 2024. "Education during conflict: The effect of territorial control by insurgents on schooling," Discussion Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2024_03, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
    3. Maxwell Mkondiwa, 2020. "Mancala board games and origins of entrepreneurship in Africa," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 15(10), pages 1-23, October.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Africa; Development; Precolonial institutions; Ethnicities; Inequality; Nigeria;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • N37 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Africa; Oceania
    • P48 - Political Economy and Comparative Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Legal Institutions; Property Rights; Natural Resources; Energy; Environment; Regional Studies

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