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Fiscal and Political Decentralization and Government Quality


  • Andreas P. Kyriacoua

    (Departament d’Economia, Universitat de Girona)

  • Oriol Roca-Sagalésb

    (Departament d’Economia Aplicada, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)


In this paper we apply both cross-section and panel analysis to the relationship between fiscal and political decentralization and government quality. We find that fiscal decentralization has a positive impact. Moreover, political decentralization tends to reduce the positive impact of fiscal decentralization on the quality of government. This negative impact of political decentralization on government quality persists when controlling for the degree of democratic maturity of countries but disappears when controlling for the extent of experience with statehood or public administration. This suggests that it is more affordable, in terms of government quality, to combine fiscal and political decentralization in countries with a long history of statehood.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas P. Kyriacoua & Oriol Roca-Sagalésb, 2010. "Fiscal and Political Decentralization and Government Quality," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper1005, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:ays:ispwps:paper1005

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    Cited by:

    1. Andreas P. Kyriacou & Oriol Roca Sagalés, 2018. "Decentralization and governance in Europe: Evidence from different expenditure components," Working Papers. Collection A: Public economics, governance and decentralization 1802, Universidade de Vigo, GEN - Governance and Economics research Network.
    2. Vassilis Tselios & Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, 2020. "Did Decentralisation Affect Citizens’ Perception of the European Union? The Impact during the Height of Decentralisation in Europe," Economies, MDPI, vol. 8(2), pages 1-26, May.
    3. Lorenz Blume & Stefan Voigt, 2011. "Federalism and decentralization—a critical survey of frequently used indicators," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 238-264, September.
    4. Vassilis Tselios & Andrés Rodríguez-Pose & Andy Pike & John Tomaney & Gianpiero Torrisi, 2012. "Income Inequality, Decentralisation, and Regional Development in Western Europe," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 44(6), pages 1278-1301, June.
    5. Andreas P. Kyriacou & Leonel Muinelo-Gallo & Oriol Roca-Sagalés, 2018. "The efficiency of transport infrastructure investment and the role of institutions: an empirical analysis," Working Papers. Collection B: Regional and sectoral economics 1802, Universidade de Vigo, GEN - Governance and Economics research Network.
    6. Choudhury, Atrayee & Sahu, Sohini, 2022. "Revisiting the nexus between fiscal decentralization and government size - The role of ethnic fragmentation," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).
    7. Kshitiz Shrestha & Jorge Martinez‐Vazquez & Charles Hankla, 2023. "Political decentralization and corruption: Exploring the conditional role of parties," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(1), pages 411-439, March.
    8. Andrea Filippetti & Giovanni Cerulli, 2018. "Are local public services better delivered in more autonomous regions? Evidence from European regions using a dose‐response approach," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(3), pages 801-826, August.
    9. Kyriacou, Andreas & Morral-Palacín, Noemí, 2015. "Secessionism and the Quality of Government: Evidence from a Sample of OECD Countries," MPRA Paper 116307, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Tristan Canare, 2022. "Decentralization and welfare: Evidence from a panel of countries," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 93(3), pages 767-796, September.
    11. Tristan Canare, 2021. "Decentralization and Development Outcomes: What Does the Empirical Literature Really Say?," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 237(2), pages 111-151, June.
    12. Yener AltunbaÅŸ & John Thornton, 2012. "Fiscal Decentralization and Governance," Public Finance Review, , vol. 40(1), pages 66-85, January.
    13. Momi Dahan & Michel Strawczynski, 2020. "Budget institutions and government effectiveness," Journal of Public Budgeting, Accounting & Financial Management, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, vol. 32(2), pages 217-246, April.
    14. Nadiia Davydenko & Natalia Wasilewska & Svitlana Boiko & Mirosław Wasilewski, 2022. "Development of Rural Areas in Ukraine in the Context of Decentralization: An Empirical Study," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 14(11), pages 1-26, May.
    15. Escaleras, Monica & Chiang, Eric P., 2017. "Fiscal decentralization and institutional quality on the business environment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 161-163.
    16. Liu, Shasha & Ji, Mianmian & Wang, Huijuan, 2021. "Decentralization and firm innovation: Evidence from a natural experiment in China," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 501-512.
    17. Changwony, Frederick Kibon & Paterson, Audrey S., 2019. "Accounting practice, fiscal decentralization and corruption," The British Accounting Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(5).
    18. Andrea Filippetti & Agnese Sacchi, 2016. "Decentralization and economic growth reconsidered: The role of regional authority," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 34(8), pages 1793-1824, December.
    19. Feng, Suling & Sui, Bo & Liu, Huimin & Li, Guoxiang, 2020. "Environmental decentralization and innovation in China," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 660-674.
    20. Kyriacou, Andreas P. & Roca-Sagalés, Oriol, 2011. "Fiscal decentralization and government quality in the OECD," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 111(3), pages 191-193, June.
    21. Goel, Rajeev K. & Mazhar, Ummad & Nelson, Michael A. & Ram, Rati, 2017. "Different forms of decentralization and their impact on government performance: Micro-level evidence from 113 countries," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 171-183.
    22. Monica Escaleras & Peter T. Calcagno, 2018. "Does Fiscal Decentralization Affect Infrastructure Quality? An Examination Of U.S. States," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(2), pages 410-422, April.
    23. Kyriacou, Andreas P. & Muinelo-Gallo, Leonel & Roca-Sagalés, Oriol, 2019. "The efficiency of transport infrastructure investment and the role of government quality: An empirical analysis," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 93-102.
    24. Muhammad Syauqi Qur’ani Putra Ariva & Ermawati, 2020. "Determinants Influencing the Level of Corruption in Indonesia Local Governments," Journal of Economics and Behavioral Studies, AMH International, vol. 12(4), pages 34-42.

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    Quality of government; fiscal decentralization; political decentralization; democratic maturity; cross-section and panel data;
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