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Growth, History, or Institutions? What Explains State Fragility in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Bertocchi, Graziella

    ()

    (University of Modena and Reggio Emilia)

  • Guerzoni, Andrea

    ()

    (University of Modena and Reggio Emilia)

We explore the determinants of state fragility in sub-Saharan Africa. Controlling for a wide range of economic, demographic, geographic and istitutional regressors, we find that institutions, and in particular the civil liberties index and the number of revolutions, are the main determinants of fragility, even taking into account their potential endogeneity. Economic factors such as income growth and investment display a non robust impact after controlling for omitted variables and reverse causality. Colonial variables reflecting the history of the region display a marginal impact on fragility once institutions are accounted for.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4817.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4817
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  1. Bertocchi, Graziella & Canova, Fabio, 1996. "Did Colonization Matter for Growth? An Empirical Exploration into the Historical Causes of Africa's Underdevelopment," CEPR Discussion Papers 1444, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  4. Isham, Jonathan & Kaufmann, Daniel & Pritchett, Lant H, 1997. "Civil Liberties, Democracy, and the Performance of Government Projects," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 11(2), pages 219-42, May.
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  9. Vallings, Claire & Moreno-Torres, Magui, 2005. "Drivers Of Fragility: What Makes States Fragile?," PRDE Working Papers 12824, Department for International Development (DFID) (UK).
  10. Nunn, Nathan, 2007. "The Long-Term Effects of Africa's Slave Trades," MPRA Paper 4134, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. McGillivray, Mark & Feeny, Simon, 2008. "Aid and Growth in Fragile States," Working Paper Series RP2008/03, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
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  13. Carment, David & Prest, Stewart & Samy, Yiagadeesen, 2008. "Determinants of State Fragility and Implications for Aid Allocation: An Assessment Based on the Country Indicators for Foreign Policy Project," Working Paper Series RP2008/46, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  14. Barro, R.J., 1989. "Economic Growth In A Cross Section Of Countries," RCER Working Papers 201, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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  16. 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.
  17. Graziella Bertocchi & Andrea Guerzoni, 2010. "The Fragile Definition of State Fragility," Department of Economics 0624, University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi".
  18. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker Than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116, February.
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  21. Sachs, J-D & Warner, A-M, 1996. "Sources of Slow Growth in African Economies," Papers 545, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
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