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Segregation and the Quality of Government in a Cross-Section of Countries

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  • Alesina, Alberto
  • Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina

Abstract

This paper has three goals. The first (and perhaps the most important one) is to provide a new compilation of data on ethnic, linguistic and religious composition at the sub-national level for a large number of countries. This data set allows us to measure segregation of different ethnic, religious and linguistic groups within the same country. The second goal is to correlate measures of segregation with measures of quality of the polity and policymaking. The third is to construct an instrument that helps to overcome the endogeneity problem due to the fact that groups move within country borders, partly in response to policies. Our results suggest that more segregated countries in terms of ethnicity and language, i.e., those where groups live more spatially separately, have a substantially lower quality of government. In contrast, there is no relationship between religious segregation and the government quality.

Suggested Citation

  • Alesina, Alberto & Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina, 2008. "Segregation and the Quality of Government in a Cross-Section of Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 6943, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6943
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Diversity; Ethnicity; Fractionalization; Language; Quality of government; Religion; Segregation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development

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