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Borders and Growth

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  • Enrico Spolaore
  • Romain Wacziarg

Abstract

This paper presents a framework to understand and measure the effects of political borders on economic growth and per capita income levels. We present a model providing a theoretical foundation to estimate empirically the effects of political borders on growth. In our model, political integration between two countries results in a positive country size effect and a negative effect through reduced openness vis-a-vis the rest of the world. We estimate the growth effects that would have resulted from the hypothetical removal of national borders between pairs of adjacent countries. We also identify country pairs where political integration would have been mutually beneficial.
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Suggested Citation

  • Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2005. "Borders and Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 331-386, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jecgro:v:10:y:2005:i:4:p:331-386
    DOI: 10.1007/s10887-005-4719-6
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-1056.
    2. Enrico Spolaore & Alberto Alesina & Romain Wacziarg, 2000. "Economic Integration and Political Disintegration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1276-1296, December.
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    7. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Mellinger, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," CID Working Papers 1, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
    8. G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), 1995. "Handbook of International Economics," Handbook of International Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
    9. Jeffrey D. Sachs, 2001. "Tropical Underdevelopment," NBER Working Papers 8119, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. 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.
    11. Alberto F. Ades & Edward L. Glaeser, 1999. "Evidence on Growth, Increasing Returns, and the Extent of the Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 1025-1045.
    12. Francisco Rodríguez & Dani Rodrik, 2001. "Trade Policy and Economic Growth: A Skeptic's Guide to the Cross-National Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 261-338, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Gallup, John & Sachs, Jeffrey, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," Harvard Institute for International Development (HIID) Papers 294434, Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government.
    14. McCallum, John, 1995. "National Borders Matter: Canada-U.S. Regional Trade Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 615-623, June.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    economic integration; political unions; growth; F1; O5;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • O5 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies

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