IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ces/ceswps/_5209.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Ethnic Favoritism: An Axiom of Politics?

Author

Listed:
  • Giacomo De Luca
  • Roland Hodler
  • Paul A. Raschky
  • Michele Valsecchi

Abstract

We investigate the prevalence and determinants of ethnic favoritism, i.e., preferential public policies targeted at the political leader’s ethnic group. We construct a panel dataset of 2,022 ethnographic regions from 139 countries with annual observations from 1992 to 2012, and use nighttime light intensity as output measure to capture the distributive effects of a wide range of policies. We find robust evidence for ethnic favoritism: the political leaders’ ethnographic regions enjoy 10% higher nighttime light intensity. We further find that ethnic favoritism is a global rather than Sub-Saharan African phenomenon, which is present in poor as well as rich countries; that political institutions have a weak effect on ethnic favoritism; that ethnic favoritism is most prevalent in ethnically fractionalized and segregated countries with long established polities; and that ethnic favoritism does not contribute to sustainable development.

Suggested Citation

  • Giacomo De Luca & Roland Hodler & Paul A. Raschky & Michele Valsecchi, 2015. "Ethnic Favoritism: An Axiom of Politics?," CESifo Working Paper Series 5209, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_5209
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp5209.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dreher, Axel & Lamla, Michael J. & Lein, Sarah M. & Somogyi, Frank, 2009. "The impact of political leaders' profession and education on reforms," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 169-193, March.
    2. 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.
    3. Louis Putterman & David N. Weil, 2010. "Post-1500 Population Flows and The Long-Run Determinants of Economic Growth and Inequality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1627-1682.
    4. Robin Burgess & Remi Jedwab & Edward Miguel & Ameet Morjaria & Gerard Padró i Miquel, 2015. "The Value of Democracy: Evidence from Road Building in Kenya," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(6), pages 1817-1851, June.
    5. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 2003. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(1), pages 7-73, March.
    6. Elias Papaioannou, 2014. "National Institutions and Subnational Development in Africa," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(1), pages 151-213.
    7. Doll, Christopher N.H. & Muller, Jan-Peter & Morley, Jeremy G., 2006. "Mapping regional economic activity from night-time light satellite imagery," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 75-92, April.
    8. Patrick Francois & Ilia Rainer & Francesco Trebbi, 2014. "The Dictator's Inner Circle," NBER Working Papers 20216, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Souleymane Soumahoro, 2015. "Leadership favouritism in Africa," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(15), pages 1236-1239, October.
    10. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2009. "Mostly Harmless Econometrics: An Empiricist's Companion," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 8769.
    11. Rachel Glennerster & Edward Miguel & Alexander D. Rothenberg, 2013. "Collective Action in Diverse Sierra Leone Communities," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 0, pages 285-316, May.
    12. Hodler, Roland & Raschky, Paul A., 2014. "Economic shocks and civil conflict at the regional level," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 124(3), pages 530-533.
    13. Hyde, Susan D. & Marinov, Nikolay, 2012. "Which Elections Can Be Lost?," Political Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(02), pages 191-210, March.
    14. Sutton, Paul C. & Costanza, Robert, 2002. "Global estimates of market and non-market values derived from nighttime satellite imagery, land cover, and ecosystem service valuation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 509-527, June.
    15. Patrick Francois & Ilia Rainer & Francesco Trebbi, 2015. "How Is Power Shared in Africa?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 83, pages 465-503, March.
    16. Anders Aslund, 2015. "Ukraine: What Went Wrong and How to Fix It," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 7014.
    17. Andrew Dickens, 2018. "Ethnolinguistic Favoritism in African Politics," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 370-402, July.
    18. Franck, Raphaël & Rainer, Ilia, 2012. "Does the Leader's Ethnicity Matter? Ethnic Favoritism, Education, and Health in Sub-Saharan Africa," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 106(02), pages 294-325, May.
    19. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2003. "Ethnic Diversity and Economic Performance," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2028, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    20. Pelle Ahlerup & Ann-Sofie Isaksson, 2015. "Ethno-Regional Favouritism in Sub-Saharan Africa," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(2), pages 143-152, May.
    21. Alberto Alesina & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2011. "Segregation and the Quality of Government in a Cross Section of Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 1872-1911, August.
    22. Nils B. Weidmann & Jan Ketil Roslashd & Lars-Erik Cederman, 2010. "Representing ethnic groups in space: A new dataset," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 47(4), pages 491-499, July.
    23. Timothy Besley & Jose G. Montalvo & Marta Reynal‐Querol, 2011. "Do Educated Leaders Matter?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 121(554), pages 205-205, August.
    24. William Easterly & Ross Levine, 1997. "Africa's Growth Tragedy: Policies and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1203-1250.
    25. Frederico Finan & Maurizio Mazzocco, 2016. "Electoral Incentives and the Allocation of Public Funds," NBER Working Papers 21859, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    26. repec:hrv:faseco:30747160 is not listed on IDEAS
    27. Bates, Robert H., "undated". "Ethnicity and Modernization in Contemporary Africa," Working Papers 16, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
    28. Hannes Mueller & Agustin Tapsoba, 2016. "Access to Power, Political Institutions and Ethnic Favoritism," Working Papers 901, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    29. repec:cup:apsrev:v:101:y:2007:i:01:p:159-172_07 is not listed on IDEAS
    30. Benjamin F. Jones & Benjamin A. Olken, 2005. "Do Leaders Matter? National Leadership and Growth Since World War II," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 835-864.
    31. J. Vernon Henderson & Adam Storeygard & David N. Weil, 2012. "Measuring Economic Growth from Outer Space," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 994-1028, April.
    32. Stelios Michalopoulos & Elias Papaioannou, 2013. "Pre‐Colonial Ethnic Institutions and Contemporary African Development," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 81(1), pages 113-152, January.
    33. Fearon, James D, 2003. "Ethnic and Cultural Diversity by Country," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 195-222, June.
    34. repec:hrv:faseco:30752835 is not listed on IDEAS
    35. Nickell, Stephen J, 1981. "Biases in Dynamic Models with Fixed Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1417-1426, November.
    36. Roland Hodler & Paul A. Raschky, 2014. "Regional Favoritism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(2), pages 995-1033.
    37. Miguel, Edward & Gugerty, Mary Kay, 2005. "Ethnic diversity, social sanctions, and public goods in Kenya," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 2325-2368, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Samuel Bazzi & Matthew Gudgeon, 2015. "Local Government Proliferation, Diversity, and Conflict," HiCN Working Papers 205, Households in Conflict Network.
    2. Quoc-Anh Do & Kieu-Trang Nguyen & Anh N. Tran, 2017. "One Mandarin Benefits the Whole Clan: Hometown Favoritism in an Authoritarian Regime," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 1-29, October.
    3. Fuchs, Andreas & Dreher, Axel & Hodler, Roland & Parks, Bradley C. & Raschky, Paul, 2015. "Aid on Demand: African Leaders and the Geography of China s Foreign Assistance," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112838, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    4. Hodler, Roland & Valsecchi, Michele & Vesperoni, Alberto, 2017. "Ethnic Geography: Measurement and Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 12378, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Quoc-Anh Do & Kieu-Trang Nguyen & Anh N. Tran, 2017. "One Mandarin Benefits the Whole Clan: Hometown Favoritism in an Authoritarian Regime," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 1-29, October.
    6. Pierre André & Paul Maarek & Fatoumata Tapo, 2018. "Ethnic Favoritism: Winner Takes All or Power Sharing? Evidence from school constructions in Benin," THEMA Working Papers 2018-03, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
    7. Quoc-Anh Do & Kieu-Trang Nguyen & Anh N. Tran, 2017. "One Mandarin Benefits the Whole Clan: Hometown Favoritism in an Authoritarian Regime," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 1-29, October.
    8. Christophe Muller, 2017. "Ethnic Horizontal Inequity in Indonesia," Working Papers halshs-01508026, HAL.
    9. Samuel Bazzi & Matthew Gudgeon, 2017. "The Political Boundaries of Ethnic Divisions," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2018-005, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    10. Samuel Bazzi & Matthew Gudgeon, "undated". "Local Government Proliferation, Diversity, and Conflict," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-271, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    11. Ashani Amarasinghe & Roland Hodler & Paul A. Raschky & Yves Zenou, 2018. "Spatial Diffusion of Economic Shocks in Networks," CESifo Working Paper Series 7001, CESifo Group Munich.
    12. Gomes, Joseph, 2014. "The health costs of ethnic distance: evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa," ISER Working Paper Series 2014-33, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    13. repec:eee:ecolet:v:159:y:2017:i:c:p:78-81 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Christophe Muller & Pierre Pecher, 2018. "Transborder Ethnic Kin and Local Prosperity: Evidence from Night-Time Light Intensity in Africa," Working Papers halshs-01801170, HAL.
    15. Andrew Dickens, 2018. "Ethnolinguistic Favoritism in African Politics," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 370-402, July.
    16. Anna Bruederle & Roland Hodler, 2017. "Nighttime Lights as a Proxy for Human Development at the Local Level," CESifo Working Paper Series 6555, CESifo Group Munich.
    17. Christian Bommer & Axel Dreher & Marcello Perez-Alvarez, 2018. "Regional and Ethnic Favoritism in the Allocation of Humanitarian Aid," CESifo Working Paper Series 7038, CESifo Group Munich.
    18. Fuchs, Andreas & Richert, Katharina, 2015. "Do Development Minister Characteristics Affect Aid Giving?," Working Papers 0604, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
    19. Christophe Muller, 2016. "Ethnic inequality and community activities in Indonesia," WIDER Working Paper Series 170, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    ethnic favoritism; political leaders; institutions;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth

    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:ces:ceswps:_5209. 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: (Klaus Wohlrabe). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/cesifde.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 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.

    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.