IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/abo/neswpt/w0065.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Decentralization and Political Institutions

Author

Listed:
  • Ruben Enikolopov

    (Harvard University and CEFIR)

  • Ekaterina Zhuravskaya

    (New Economic School/CEFIR and CEPR)

Abstract

Does fiscal decentralization lead to more efficient governance, better public goods, and higher economic growth? This paper tests Riker’s theory (1964) that the results of fiscal decentralization depend on the level of countries’ political centralization. We analyze crosssection and panel data from up to 75 developing and transition countries for 25 years. Two of Riker’s predictions about the role of political institutions in disciplining fiscally-autonomous local politicians are confirmed by the data. 1) Strength of national political parties significantly improves outcomes of fiscal decentralization such as economic growth, quality of government, and public goods provision. 2) In contrast, administrative subordination (i.e., appointing local politicians rather than electing them) does not improve the results of fiscal decentralization.

Suggested Citation

  • Ruben Enikolopov & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2006. "Decentralization and Political Institutions," Working Papers w0065, New Economic School (NES).
  • Handle: RePEc:abo:neswpt:w0065
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.nes.ru/files/Preprints-resh/WP65updatedNovember.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Musgrave, Richard A, 1969. "Theories of Fiscal Federalism," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 24(4), pages 521-536.
    2. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1995. "Does Electoral Accountability Affect Economic Policy Choices? Evidence from Gubernatorial Term Limits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 769-798.
    3. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-279, April.
    4. Mariano Tommasi & Mark P. Jones & Sebastian M. Saiegh & Pablo T. Spiller, 2002. "Amateur Legislators-Professional Politicians: The Argentine Congress," Working Papers 31, Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia, revised Jul 2002.
    5. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1999. "Political economics and macroeconomic policy," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 22, pages 1397-1482, Elsevier.
    6. Pranab Bardhan and and Dilip Mookherjee., 1999. "Relative Capture of Local and Central Governments: An Essay in the Political Economy of Decentralization," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers C99-109, University of California at Berkeley.
    7. Nicola Gennaioli & Ilia Rainer, 2007. "The modern impact of precolonial centralization in Africa," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 12(3), pages 185-234, September.
    8. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416-416.
    9. Pablo T. Spiller, 2003. "The Institutional Foundations of Public Policy: A Transactions Approach with Application to Argentina," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 281-306, October.
    10. Ron Shachar, 2003. "Party loyalty as habit formation," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(3), pages 251-269.
    11. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2003. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," Working Papers 238, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    12. Inman, Robert P & Fitts, Michael A, 1990. "Political Institutions and Fiscal Policy: Evidence from the U.S. Historical Record," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(0), pages 79-132.
    13. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini & Francesco Trebbi, 2003. "Electoral Rules and Corruption," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(4), pages 958-989, June.
    14. Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Easterly, William & Kurlat, Sergio & Wacziarg, Romain, 2003. "Fractionalization," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 155-194, June.
    15. Gérard Roland, 2004. "Transition and Economics: Politics, Markets, and Firms," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026268148x.
    16. Hayek, F. A., 1996. "Individualism and Economic Order," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, number 9780226320939, Febrero.
    17. Daron Acemoglu, 2005. "Constitutions, Politics and Economics: A Review Essay on Persson and Tabellini's "The Economic Effect of Constitutions"," NBER Working Papers 11235, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Philippe Aghion & Alberto Alesina & Francesco Trebbi, 2004. "Endogenous Political Institutions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(2), pages 565-611.
    19. repec:ags:afjare:141665 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina V., 2000. "Incentives to provide local public goods: fiscal federalism, Russian style," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 337-368, June.
    21. Fisman, Raymond & Gatti, Roberta, 2002. "Decentralization and corruption: evidence across countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 325-345, March.
    22. Akai, Nobuo & Sakata, Masayo, 2002. "Fiscal decentralization contributes to economic growth: evidence from state-level cross-section data for the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 93-108, July.
    23. Zhang, Tao & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998. "Fiscal decentralization, public spending, and economic growth in China," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 221-240, February.
    24. Eric Maskin & Yingyi Qian & Chenggang Xu, 2000. "Incentives, Information, and Organizational Form," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(2), pages 359-378.
    25. Robert J. Barro, 1998. "Determinants of Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Empirical Study," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522543.
    26. Torsten Persson & Gerard Roland & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Comparative Politics and Public Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1121-1161, December.
    27. 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.
    28. Qian, Yingyi & Roland, Gerard, 1998. "Federalism and the Soft Budget Constraint," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1143-1162, December.
    29. Robalino, David A. & Picazo, Oscar F. & Voetberg, Albertus, 2001. "Does fiscal decentralization improve health outcomes? - evidence from a cross-country analysis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2565, The World Bank.
    30. Xie, Danyang & Zou, Heng-fu & Davoodi, Hamid, 1999. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth in the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 228-239, March.
    31. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 2003. "Elected Versus Appointed Regulators: Theory and Evidence," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1176-1206, September.
    32. Sonin, Konstantin, 2010. "Provincial protectionism," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 111-122, June.
    33. Olivier Blanchard & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Federalism With and Without Political Centralization: China Versus Russia," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 48(4), pages 1-8.
    34. Jin, Hehui & Qian, Yingyi & Weingast, Barry R., 2005. "Regional decentralization and fiscal incentives: Federalism, Chinese style," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1719-1742, September.
    35. Gary Woller & Kerk Phillips, 1998. "Fiscal decentralisation and IDC economic growth: An empirical investigation," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(4), pages 139-148.
    36. Winkler, Donald R. & Rounds, Taryn, 1996. "Municipal and private sector response to decentralization and school choice," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 365-376, October.
    37. Davoodi, Hamid & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Study," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 244-257, March.
    38. Panizza, Ugo, 1999. "On the determinants of fiscal centralization: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 97-139, October.
    39. Mariano Tommasi, 2006. "The Institutional Foundations of Public Policy," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Spring 20), pages 1-36, January.
    40. Seabright, Paul, 1996. "Accountability and decentralisation in government: An incomplete contracts model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 61-89, January.
    41. Parry, Taryn Rounds, 1997. "Achieving balance in decentralization: A case study of education decentralization in Chile," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 211-225, February.
    42. Alberto Alesina, 2002. "The Size of Countries: Does it Matter?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1975, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    43. Mariano Tommasi & Sebastian Saiegh & Pablo Sanguinetti, 2001. "Fiscal Federalism in Argentina: Policies, Politics, and Institutional Reform," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Spring 20), pages 157-212, January.
    44. Pranab Bardhan, 2002. "Decentralization of Governance and Development," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(4), pages 185-205, Fall.
    45. Allen Hicken, 2004. "The Politics of Economic Reform in Thailand: Crisis and Compromise," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-638, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    46. Arzaghi, Mohammad & Henderson, J. Vernon, 2005. "Why countries are fiscally decentralizing," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(7), pages 1157-1189, July.
    47. Yasheng Huang, 2002. "Managing Chinese Bureaucrats: An Institutional Economics Perspective," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 50(1), pages 61-79, March.
    48. Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1997. "I Just Ran Two Million Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 178-183, May.
    49. Yingyi Qian & Barry R. Weingast, 1996. "China's transition to markets: market-preserving federalism, chinese style," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(2), pages 149-185.
    50. repec:hrv:faseco:30747169 is not listed on IDEAS
    51. Dilip Mookherjee & Pranab K. Bardhan, 2000. "Capture and Governance at Local and National Levels," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 135-139, May.
    52. repec:hrv:faseco:30747160 is not listed on IDEAS
    53. Cai, Hongbin & Treisman, Daniel, 2004. "State corroding federalism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(3-4), pages 819-843, March.
    54. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "The Economic Effects of Constitutions," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262661926.
    55. International Monetary Fund, 2001. "Fiscal Decentralization and Governance: A Cross-Country Analysis," IMF Working Papers 2001/071, International Monetary Fund.
    56. Beck, Thorsten & Clarke, George & Groff, Alberto & Keefer, Philip & Walsh, Patrick, 2000. "New tools and new tests in comparative political economy - the database of political institutions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2283, The World Bank.
    57. Koleman S. Strumpf & Felix Oberholzer-Gee, 2002. "Endogenous Policy Decentralization: Testing the Central Tenet of Economic Federalism," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(1), pages 1-36, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Andreas Kyriacou & Oriol Roca sagalés, 2009. "Fiscal descentralization and the quality of government: evidence from panel data," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 189(2), pages 131-155, June.
    2. Jorge Martinez-Vazquez & Santiago Lago-Peñas & Agnese Sacchi, 2017. "The Impact Of Fiscal Decentralization: A Survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(4), pages 1095-1129, September.
    3. Reingewertz, Yaniv, 2014. "Fiscal Decentralization - a Survey of the Empirical Literature," MPRA Paper 59889, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Fan, C. Simon & Lin, Chen & Treisman, Daniel, 2009. "Political decentralization and corruption: Evidence from around the world," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1-2), pages 14-34, February.
    5. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2005. "Decentralization, Corruption and Government Accountability: An Overview," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-152, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    6. Lars P. Feld & Horst Zimmermann & Thomas Döring, 2004. "Federalism, Decentralization, and Economic Growth," Marburg Working Papers on Economics 200430, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    7. Emilie Caldeira & Martial Foucault & Grégoire Rota-Graziosi, 2014. "Does Decentralization Facilitate Access to Poverty-Related Services? Evidence from Benin," NBER Chapters, in: African Successes, Volume I: Government and Institutions, pages 57-102, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2007. "Whither Russia? A Review of Andrei Shleifer's A Normal Country," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(1), pages 127-146, March.
    9. Keith Blackburn & Gareth Downing, 2015. "Deconcentration, Corruption and Economic Growth," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 209, Economics, The University of Manchester.
    10. Hatfield, John William & Kosec, Katrina, 2013. "Federal competition and economic growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 144-159.
    11. Canavire-Bacarreza, Gustavo & Martinez-Vazquez, Jorge & Yedgenov, Bauyrzhan, 2020. "Identifying and disentangling the impact of fiscal decentralization on economic growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 127(C).
    12. Umaima Arif & Eatzaz Ahmad, 2018. "A Framework For Analyzing The Impact Of Fiscal Decentralization On Macroeconomic Performance, Governance And Economic Growth," The Singapore Economic Review (SER), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 65(01), pages 3-39, May.
    13. Antonis Adam & Manthos Delis & Pantelis Kammas, 2014. "Fiscal decentralization and public sector efficiency: evidence from OECD countries," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 17-49, February.
    14. Perez-Sebastian, Fidel & Raveh, Ohad, 2016. "Natural resources, decentralization, and risk sharing: Can resource booms unify nations?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(C), pages 38-55.
    15. Jin, Hehui & Qian, Yingyi & Weingast, Barry R., 2005. "Regional decentralization and fiscal incentives: Federalism, Chinese style," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1719-1742, September.
    16. Martinez-Vazquez, Jorge & McNab, Robert M., 2003. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(9), pages 1597-1616, September.
    17. Robert P. Inman, 2008. "Federalism's Values and the Value of Federalism," NBER Working Papers 13735, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Lars P. Feld & Horst Zimmermann & Thomas Döring, 2003. "Föderalismus, Dezentralität und Wirtschaftswachstum," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 72(3), pages 361-377.
    19. Anwar Shah & Theresa Thompson & Heng-fu Zou, 2004. "Decentralising the public sector: The Impact of Decentralisation on Service Delivery, Corruption, Fiscal Management and Growth in Developing and Emerging Market Economies: A Synthesis of Empirical Evi," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 2(01), pages 10-14, October.
    20. Brueckner, Jan K., 2006. "Fiscal federalism and economic growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(10-11), pages 2107-2120, November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
    • H40 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - General
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:abo:neswpt:w0065. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nerasru.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Vladimir Ivanyukhin (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nerasru.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.