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Does US Aid Buy UN General Assembly Votes? A Disaggregated Analysis

Using panel data for 143 countries over the period 1973-2002, this paper empirically analyzes the influence of US aid on voting patterns in the UN General Assembly. We use disaggregated aid data to account for the fact that various forms of aid may differ in their ability to induce political support by recipients. We obtain strong evidence that US aid buys voting compliance in the Assembly. More specifically, our results suggest that general budget support and untied grants are the major aid categories by which recipients have been induced to vote in line with the United States. When replicating the analysis for other G7 donors, no comparable patterns emerge.

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Paper provided by KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich in its series KOF Working papers with number 06-138.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kof:wpskof:06-138
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  1. Thiele, Rainer & Nunnenkamp, Peter & Dreher, Axel, 2007. "Do donors target aid in line with the millennium development goals? A sector perspective of aid allocation," Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy 4164, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
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  4. Abrams, Burton A & Lewis, Kenneth A, 1993. " Human Rights and the Distribution of U.S. Foreign Aid," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 77(4), pages 815-21, December.
  5. Hristos Doucouliagos & Martin Paldam, 2009. "The Aid Effectiveness Literature: The Sad Results Of 40 Years Of Research," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 23(3), pages 433-461, 07.
  6. Rai, Kul B., 1972. "Foreign Policy and Voting in the UN General Assembly," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(03), pages 589-594, June.
  7. David Roodman, 2004. "An Index of Donor Performance," Development and Comp Systems 0412004, EconWPA.
  8. Alberto Alesina & David Dollar, 1998. "Who Gives Foreign Aid to Whom and Why?," NBER Working Papers 6612, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Berthelemy, Jean-Claude & Tichit, Ariane, 2002. "Bilateral Donors' Aid Allocation Decisions: A Three-dimensional Panel Analysis," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  10. Windmeijer, Frank, 2005. "A finite sample correction for the variance of linear efficient two-step GMM estimators," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 25-51, May.
  11. Alberto Alesina & Beatrice Weder, 2002. "Do Corrupt Governments Receive Less Foreign Aid?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1126-1137, September.
  12. repec:bla:restud:v:58:y:1991:i:2:p:277-97 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Axel Dreher & Nathan Jensen, 2003. "Independent Actor or Agent? An Empirical Analysis of the impact of US interests on IMF Conditions," International Finance 0310004, EconWPA, revised 08 Jan 2004.
  14. Rainer Thiele & Peter Nunnenkamp & Axel Dreher, 2006. "Sectoral Aid Priorities: Are Donors Really Doing their Best to Achieve the Millennium Development Goals?," Kiel Working Papers 1266, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  15. Oecd, 2003. "Aid Effectiveness and Selectivity: Integrating Multiple Objectives into Aid Allocations," OECD Journal on Development, OECD Publishing, vol. 4(3), pages 7-40.
  16. Levitt, Steven D & Snyder, James M, Jr, 1997. "The Impact of Federal Spending on House Election Outcomes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(1), pages 30-53, February.
  17. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2002. "IMF Programs: Who is Chosen and What Are the Effects?," NBER Working Papers 8951, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Abdul Ghafar Noury & Simon Hix & Gérard Roland, 2007. "Democratic politics in the European Parliament," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/7744, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  19. Axel Dreher & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2006. "Do IMF and World Bank Influence Voting in the UN General Assembly?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1724, CESifo Group Munich.
  20. Fleck, Robert K. & Kilby, Christopher & Fleck, Robert K., 2001. "World Bank Independence: A Model and Statistical Analysis of U.S. Influence," Vassar College Department of Economics Working Paper Series 53, Vassar College Department of Economics.
  21. Fleck, Robert K. & Kilby, Christopher & Fleck, Robert K., 2000. "Reassessing the Role of Constituency in Congressional Voting," Vassar College Department of Economics Working Paper Series 51, Vassar College Department of Economics.
  22. Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Lisa CHAUVET, 1999. "Aid and Performance: A Reassessment," Working Papers 199910, CERDI.
  23. Nunnenkamp, Peter & Thiele, Rainer & Wilfer, Tom, 2005. "Grants versus loans: Much ado about (almost) nothing," Kiel Economic Policy Papers 4, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  24. Hristos Doucouliagos & Martin Paldam, 2007. "A meta-analysis of development aid allocation: The effects of income level and population size," Economics Working Papers 2007-15, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  25. P. Lundborg, 1998. "Foreign Aid and International Support as a Gift Exchange," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(2), pages 127-142, 07.
  26. Philipp Harms & Matthias Lutz, 2004. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Foreign Aid: A Survey," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2004 2004-11, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
  27. Feyzioglu, Tarhan & Swaroop, Vinaya & Zhu, Min, 1998. "A Panel Data Analysis of the Fungibility of Foreign Aid," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 12(1), pages 29-58, January.
  28. Kilby, Christopher, 2005. "Donor Influence in MDBs: the Case of the Asian Development Bank," Vassar College Department of Economics Working Paper Series 70, Vassar College Department of Economics.
  29. Monica Escaleras & Nejat Anbarci & Charles Register, 2007. "Public sector corruption and major earthquakes: A potentially deadly interaction," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 132(1), pages 209-230, July.
  30. Andersen, Thomas Barnebeck & Harr, Thomas & Tarp, Finn, 2006. "On US politics and IMF lending," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(7), pages 1843-1862, October.
  31. McGillivray, Mark, 2003. "Aid Effectiveness and Selectivity: Integrating Multiple Objectives into Aid Allocations," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  32. repec:zbw:ifwkie:3881 is not listed on IDEAS
  33. Canavire-Bacarreza, Gustavo & Nunnenkamp, Peter & Thiele, Rainer & Triveño, Luis, 2006. "Assessing the allocation of aid : developmental concerns and the self-interest of donors," Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy 3983, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  34. McGillivray, M. & White, H., 1993. "Explanatory studies of aid allocation among developing countries : a critical survey," ISS Working Papers - General Series 18942, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
  35. Rolf J. Langhammer, 2004. "Halving Poverty by Doubling Aid: Is There Reason for Optimism?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(1), pages 81-98, 01.
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