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The Historical Roots of Corruption and Economic Development in Italy

Author

Listed:
  • Ilaria Petrarca
  • Roberto Ricciuti

Abstract

We claim that a sequential mechanism linking history to development exists: first, history defines the quality of social capital; then, social capital determines the level of corruption; finally, corruption affects economic performance. We test this hypothesis on a dataset of Italian provinces, and address the possible endogeneity of corruption by applying an IV model. We use three sets of historical instruments for corruption: 1) foreign dominations in 16th-17th century, 2) autocracy/autonomous rule in the 14th century, and 3) an index of social capital between in the 19th-20th century. The results indicate a significant impact of historically-driven corruption on development.

Suggested Citation

  • Ilaria Petrarca & Roberto Ricciuti, 2013. "The Historical Roots of Corruption and Economic Development in Italy," CESifo Working Paper Series 4212, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4212
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Di Liberto, Adriana & Sideri, Marco, 2015. "Past dominations, current institutions and the Italian regional economic performance," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 12-41.
    2. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2004. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 131-165, June.
    3. Nadia Fiorino & Emma Galli & Ilaria Petrarca, 2012. "Corruption and Growth: Evidence from the Italian Regions," European Journal of Government and Economics, Europa Grande, vol. 1(2), pages 126-144, December.
    4. 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.
    5. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
    6. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 271-303, September.
    7. Vito Tanzi, 1998. "Corruption Around the World; Causes, Consequences, Scope, and Cures," IMF Working Papers 98/63, International Monetary Fund.
    8. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
    9. Kugler, Maurice & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Organized crime, corruption and punishment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1639-1663, September.
    10. Guido de Blasio & Giorgio Nuzzo, 2010. "Historical Traditions Of Civicness And Local Economic Development," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 833-857.
    11. Krueger, Anne O, 1974. "The Political Economy of the Rent-Seeking Society," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(3), pages 291-303, June.
    12. Vito Tanzi, 1998. "Corruption Around the World: Causes, Consequences, Scope, and Cures," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 45(4), pages 559-594, December.
    13. repec:hrv:faseco:30747160 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    corruption; economic development; institutions; social capital; history;

    JEL classification:

    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • C26 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Instrumental Variables (IV) Estimation

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