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Ethnic Diversity, Democracy, and Health: Theory and Evidence

  • Go Kotera


    (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University)

  • Nobuhiro Mizuno


    (Faculty of Commerce and Economics, Chiba University of Commerce)

  • Keisuke Okada


    (Graduate School of Economics, Kyoto University,)

  • Sovannroeun Samreth


    (Faculty of Liberal Arts, Saitama University)

This paper examines the relationship between ethnic composition, political regimes, and the quality of public policy. Specifically, based on the citizen-candidate model, we assume individuals who have heterogeneous policy preferences and investigate how ethnic diversity affects selection of a politician and the resulting policy choices in democratic and dictatorial regimes. In the theoretical analysis, our model derives (1) a negative relationship between ethnic diversity and the quality of public policy, both in a democracy with a dominant group and in a dictatorship, and (2) a non-monotonic relationship in a democracy without a dominant group. In the empirical examination, using health outcomes as the proxy for the quality of public policy, our theoretical results are supported by evidence from the data of 154 countries.

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Paper provided by Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research in its series KIER Working Papers with number 790.

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Date of creation: Oct 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kyo:wpaper:790
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