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Colonialism, European Descendants and Democracy

  • Angeles, Luis

This paper advances that the share of European descendants in the population is a major determinant of democracy in former colonial countries. We test this hypothesis using cross-section and panel regressions with 60 developing and developed countries that were once colonies. We find that the share of European descendants can explain more than half of the difference in measures of democracy between the least and the most democratic countries in our sample. We control for other potential determinants of democracy and test for endogeneity bias using instrumental variables.

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File URL: http://repo.sire.ac.uk/handle/10943/84
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Paper provided by Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE) in its series SIRE Discussion Papers with number 2009-50.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:edn:sirdps:84
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  1. 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.
  2. Stanley L. Engerman & Kenneth L. Sokoloff, 2005. "Colonialism, Inequality, and Long-Run Paths of Development," NBER Working Papers 11057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Rodrik, Dani & Subramanian, Arvind & Trebbi, Francesco, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 3643, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. 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, 09.
  5. Easterly, William & Levine, Ross, 1997. "Africa's Growth Tragedy: Policies and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1203-50, November.
  6. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "Reversal of Fortune: Geography and Institutions in the Making of the Modern World Income Distribution," NBER Working Papers 8460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. 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 222-79, April.
  8. Papaioannou, Elias & Siourounis, Gregorios, 2008. "Economic and social factors driving the third wave of democratization," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 365-387, September.
  9. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A. & Yared, Pierre, 2009. "Reevaluating the modernization hypothesis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1043-1058, November.
  10. Angeles, Luis, 2007. "Income inequality and colonialism," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(5), pages 1155-1176, July.
  11. Barro, Robert J., 1999. "Determinants of Democracy," Scholarly Articles 3451297, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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