The agricultural and the democratic transitions - Causality and the Roundup model
Long-run development (in income) causes a large fall in the share of agriculture commonly known as the agricultural transition. We confirm that this conventional wisdom is strongly supported by the data. Long-run development (in income) also causes a large increase in democracy known as the democratic transition. Elsewhere we have shown that it is almost as strong as the agricultural transition. Recently, a method has been presented to weed out spuriousness. It makes the democratic transition go away by turning income insignificant, when it is supplemented by a set of formal controls. We show that the same method makes the agricultural transition go away as well. Hence, it seems to be a method that kills far too much, as suggested by the subtitle. This suggestion leads to a discussion of the very meaning of long-run causality.
References listed on IDEAS
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- Olsson, Ola & Hibbs Jr., Douglas A., 2000.
"Biogeography and Long-Run Economic Development,"
Working Papers in Economics
26, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics, revised 11 Aug 2000.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A & Yared, Pierre, 2005.
"Income and Democracy,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
5273, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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