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Revisiting Easterly and Levine (1997): Replication and extension

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  • MILLRINE, Mark
  • VUJIC, Suncica

Abstract

We replicate and extend the findings from Easterly and Levine (1997) arguing that ethnolinguistic fractionalization is negatively associated with several development indicators. We re-estimate the authors’ original regressions and control for several determinants of development which are correlated with ethnolinguistic fractionalization: a country’s level of partitioning (proportion of the population who belong to ethnic groups split by borders), its colonial history (whether it was formerly a colony) and regional effects (whether it is located in Africa or Latin America). In contrast with Easterly and Levine (1997), we find no evidence that ethnolinguistic fractionalization is associated with any of the development indicators. Rather, for each development indicator where, in comparison with Easterly and Levine (1997), ethnolinguistic fractionalization loses its statistical significance, we find that one of our control variables is statistically significant and takes the expected sign given the correlation between ethnolinguistic fractionalization and the control variable. Our results therefore raise the possibility that the original estimates from Easterly and Levine (1997) suffer from omitted variable bias in that they misattribute the effect of partitioning, colonial history and regional effects to the level of ethnolinguistic fractionalization.

Suggested Citation

  • MILLRINE, Mark & VUJIC, Suncica, 2017. "Revisiting Easterly and Levine (1997): Replication and extension," Working Papers 2017007, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ant:wpaper:2017007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Campos, Nauro F & Kuzeyev, Vitaliy S., 2007. "On the Dynamics of Ethnic Fractionalization," IZA Discussion Papers 2822, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Economic development; Public policy; Ethnic diversity;

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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