Education, political instability, and growth
Empirical evidence suggests a positive association between income levels and growth rates on the one hand, and political stability and educational attainment on the other. This paper develops a simple finite--horizon overlapping growth model that in the absence of institutions for precommitment has a political equilibrium with inefficiently low growth, low educational attainment, and high returns to schooling. In the model, the laissez-faire growth rate is inefficient due to an intergenerational externality in the decision to accumulate knowledge. We then contrast the efficient growth rate with the outcome when there is a sequence of governments with an objective that reflects the preferences of the individuals currently alive. The result is an equilibrium in which growth remains inefficiently low because future agents are unable to reward those currently alive to induce them to accumulate knowledge. The ability to achieve higher efficient growth hinges on either the government's ability to set policies that cannot be undone by subsequent governments, or on an alternative ``trigger strategy'' equilibrium in which each government believes it will be punished by the next if it deviates from the optimal policy.
|Date of creation:||1997|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 33 Liberty Street, New York, NY 10045-0001|
Web page: http://www.newyorkfed.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:|| Email: |
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kotlikoff, Laurence J & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E O, 1988. "Social Contracts as Assets: A Possible Solution to the Time-Consistency Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 662-77, September.
- Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
- Cukierman, Alex & Meltzer, Allan H, 1989. "A Political Theory of Government Debt and Deficits in a Neo-Ricardian Framework," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 713-32, September.
- James A. Kahn & Jong-Soo Lim, 2000.
"Finite horizons, political economy, and growth,"
102, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
- Ljungqvist, L., 1992. "Economic Development, Wage Structure and Implicit Insurance on Human Capital," Papers 512, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
- Persson, Mats & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E O, 1987. "Time Consistency of Fiscal and Monetary Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1419-31, November.
- Paul A. Samuelson, 1958. "An Exact Consumption-Loan Model of Interest with or without the Social Contrivance of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 467.
- Costas Azariadis & Allan Drazen, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-526.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fednrp:9737. 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: (Amy Farber)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.