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Why is the World Short of Democracy? A Cross-Country Ananlysis of Barriers to Representative Government

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  • Vani K. Borooah
  • Martin Paldam

Abstract

This study first uses a set of graphs and tables to present the pattern of democracy in the world, using the Gastil Index. Then a statistical analysis is conducted by two techniques: Regression techniques are used to analyze the effect on democracy of a handful of variables. It shows that poverty, Communism and the Muslim culture are the main barriers to democracy. It then uses Bayesian probability methods to make explicit the concept of the “risk” of countries being ndemocratic. The analysis focuses on the dynamics of the income effect and of the democratic deficit of the Muslim countries to see if it is stationary or transitory. It is unstable, so it may be transitory, but it has been rising.

Suggested Citation

  • Vani K. Borooah & Martin Paldam, 2006. "Why is the World Short of Democracy? A Cross-Country Ananlysis of Barriers to Representative Government," ICER Working Papers 28-2006, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:28-2006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jan- Sturm & Jakob de Haan, 2005. "Determinants of long-term growth: New results applying robust estimation and extreme bounds analysis," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 597-617, October.
    2. Robert J. Barro, 1991. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 407-443.
    3. repec:cup:apsrev:v:53:y:1959:i:01:p:69-105_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson & Pierre Yared, 2008. "Income and Democracy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 808-842.
    5. Peter Sandholt Jensen & Martin Paldam, 2007. "The Pattern of Democracy in the Twentieth Century: A Study of the Polity Index," Chapters,in: Public Choice and the Challenges of Democracy, chapter 15 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    6. Paldam, Martin, 2002. "The cross-country pattern of corruption: economics, culture and the seesaw dynamics," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 215-240, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hillman, Arye L. & Metsuyanim, Kfir & Potrafke, Niklas, 2015. "Democracy with group identity," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 40(PB), pages 274-287.
    2. Gundlach, Erich & Paldam, Martin, 2009. "A farewell to critical junctures: Sorting out long-run causality of income and democracy," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 340-354, September.
    3. Niklas Potrafke, 2016. "Policies against human trafficking: the role of religion and political institutions," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 353-386, November.
    4. Martin Gassebner & Michael J. Lamla & James Raymond Vreeland, 2013. "Extreme Bounds of Democracy," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 57(2), pages 171-197, April.
    5. Caruso, Raul & Schneider, Friedrich, 2011. "The socio-economic determinants of terrorism and political violence in Western Europe (1994–2007)," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(S1), pages 37-49.
    6. Gundlach, Erich & Paldam, Martin, 2008. "Income and democracy: a comment on Acemoglu, Johnson, Robinson, and Yared (2008)," Kiel Working Papers 1458, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    7. Arusha Cooray, 2009. "Does Democracy Explain Gender Differentials in Education?," CAMA Working Papers 2009-20, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    8. Arye Hillman & Niklas Potrafke, 2015. "The UN Goldstone Report and retraction: an empirical investigation," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 163(3), pages 247-266, June.
    9. Kalyvitis, Sarantis & Vlachaki, Irene, 2012. "When does more aid imply less democracy? An empirical examination," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 132-146.
    10. Raphael Becker & Arye Hillman & Niklas Potrafke & Alexander Schwemmer, 2015. "The preoccupation of the United Nations with Israel: Evidence and theory," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 413-437, December.
    11. Niklas Potrafke, 2012. "Islam and democracy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 151(1), pages 185-192, April.
    12. Cooray, Arusha & Potrafke, Niklas, 2011. "Gender inequality in education: Political institutions or culture and religion?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 268-280, June.
    13. Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Democracy and countries with Muslim majorities: a reply and update," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 154(3), pages 323-332, March.
    14. Martin Paldam & Erich Gundlach, 2008. "Two Views on Institutions and Development: The Grand Transition vs the Primacy of Institutions," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(1), pages 65-100, February.
    15. Francois Facchini, 2010. "Religion, law and development: Islam and Christianity—Why is it in Occident and not in the Orient that man invented the institutions of freedom?," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 103-129, February.
    16. Balding, Christopher, 2011. "A Re-examination of the Relation between Democracy and International Trade The Case of Africa," WIDER Working Paper Series 059, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    17. Désirée Teobaldelli & Friedrich Schneider, 2013. "The influence of direct democracy on the shadow economy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(3), pages 543-567, December.
    18. Arye L. Hillman & Niklas Potrafke, 2016. "Economic Freedom and Religion: An Empirical Investigation," CESifo Working Paper Series 6017, CESifo Group Munich.
    19. Tridimas, George, 2012. "How democracy was achieved," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 651-658.
    20. Gouda, Moamen & Potrafke, Niklas, 2016. "Gender equality in Muslim-majority countries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 683-698.
    21. Arye Hillman, 2007. "Economic and security consequences of supreme values," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 131(3), pages 259-280, June.
    22. Facchini, François & Melki, Mickaël, 2013. "Efficient government size: France in the 20th century," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 1-14.
    23. Hillman, Arye L., 2010. "Expressive behavior in economics and politics," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 403-418, December.
    24. IACOBUTA Andreea-Oana & ASANDULUI Mircea & TIGANAS Claudiu-Gabriel, 2015. "Institutional Environment, Initial Conditions And State Fragility In Post-Communist Countries," Revista Economica, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Faculty of Economic Sciences, vol. 67(4), pages 63-77.
    25. Islam, Muhammed N., 2015. "Economic growth, repression, and state expenditure in non-democratic regimes," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 68-85.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Democracy; Lipset’s law; Western vs Muslim Culture;

    JEL classification:

    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • P50 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - General

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