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Development at the border: a study of national integration in post-colonial West Africa

  • Cogneau, Denis
  • Mesplé-Somps, Sandrine
  • Spielvogel, Gilles

In Africa, boundaries delineated during the colonial era now divide young independent states. By applying regression discontinuity designs to a large set of surveys covering the 1986-2001 period, this paper identifies many large and significant jumps in welfare at the borders between five West-African countries around Cote d'Ivoire. Border discontinuities mirror the differences between country averages with respect to household income, connection to utilities and education. Country of residence often makes a difference, even if distance to capital city has some attenuating power. The results are consistent with a national integration process that is underway but not yet achieved.

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File URL: http://basepub.dauphine.fr/xmlui/bitstream/123456789/4965/1/2010-12.PDF
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Paper provided by Paris Dauphine University in its series Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine with number 123456789/4965.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Publication status: Published in DIAL Document de travail, 2010
Handle: RePEc:dau:papers:123456789/4965
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  1. David S. Lee & Thomas Lemieux, 2010. "Regression Discontinuity Designs in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(2), pages 281-355, June.
  2. Lee, David S., 2008. "Randomized experiments from non-random selection in U.S. House elections," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 675-697, February.
  3. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2002. "Borders and Growth," NBER Working Papers 9223, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. T. Paul Schultz, 1998. "Inequality in the distribution of personal income in the world: How it is changing and why," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 307-344.
  5. Elise Huillery, 2009. "History Matters: The Long-Term Impact of Colonial Public Investments in French West Africa," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 176-215, April.
  6. T. Paul Schultz, 1998. "Inequality in the Distribution of Personal Income in the World: How it is Changing and Why," Working Papers 784, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  7. Easterly, William & Levine, Ross, 1998. "Troubles with the Neighbours: Africa's Problem, Africa's Opportunity," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 7(1), pages 120-42, March.
  8. Easterly, W & Levine, R, 1996. "Africa's Growth Tragedy : Policies and Ethnic Divisions," Papers 536, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  9. Anonymous, 2003. "Competing in the 21st Century," Amber Waves, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, April.
  10. Hahn, Jinyong & Todd, Petra & Van der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2001. "Identification and Estimation of Treatment Effects with a Regression-Discontinuity Design," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(1), pages 201-09, January.
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