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Does Democracy Facilitate Economic Growth Or Does Economic Growth Facilitate Democracy? An Empirical Study Of Sub-Saharan Africa

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  • Paresh Narayan
  • Seema Narayan
  • Russell Smyth

Abstract

This paper examines the relationship between democracy and economic growth in 30 Sub-Saharan African countries. As our proxy for democracy we first use the democracy index constructed by Freedom House and then check the sensitivity of our findings using, as an alternative proxy for democracy, the Legislative Index of Electoral Competitiveness (LIEC). We find support for the Lipset hypothesis - in the long run, real GDP Granger causes democracy and an increase in GDP results in an improvement in democracy – in Botswana and Niger with both datasets, for Chad with the Freedom House data only and for Cote d’Ivoire and Gabon with the LIEC data only. Support for the compatibility hypothesis - in the long run democracy Granger causes real income and an increase in democracy has a positive effect on real income - is found for Botswana with the Freedom House data and for Madagascar, Rwanda, South Africa and Swaziland with the LIEC data. Support for the conflict hypothesis - in the long run democracy Granger causes real income and an increase in democracy has a negative effect on real income - is found for Gabon with the Freedom House data and Sierra Leone with the LIEC data.

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  • Paresh Narayan & Seema Narayan & Russell Smyth, 2007. "Does Democracy Facilitate Economic Growth Or Does Economic Growth Facilitate Democracy? An Empirical Study Of Sub-Saharan Africa," Monash Economics Working Papers 10-07, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:mos:moswps:2007-10
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    3. Simplice Asongu & Jacinta C. Nwachukwu, 2016. "Law, Politics and the Quality of Government in Africa," Working Papers of the African Governance and Development Institute. 16/019, African Governance and Development Institute..
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    5. Madeeha Gohar Qureshi & Eatzaz Ahmed, 2012. "The Inter-linkages between Democracy and Per Capita GDP Growth: A Cross Country Analysis," PIDE-Working Papers 2012:85, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    6. Adom, Philip Kofi, 2016. "The DDT Effect: The case of Economic Growth, Public Debt and Democracy Relationship," MPRA Paper 75022, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 11 Nov 2016.
    7. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "Law, Democracy and the Quality of Government in Africa," Working Papers of the African Governance and Development Institute. 11/018, African Governance and Development Institute..
    8. Asongu, Simplice, 2015. "Financial development in Africa - a critical examination," MPRA Paper 82131, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Simplice A. Asongu, 2014. "Finance and Democracy in Africa," Institutions and Economies (formerly known as International Journal of Institutions and Economies), Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Malaya, vol. 6(3), pages 92-116, October.
    10. Brieger Stefan & Markwardt Gunther, 2020. "The Democracy–Economy-Nexus," Review of Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 71(2), pages 135-167, August.
    11. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "Government Quality Determinants of Stock Market Performance in African Countries," Working Papers of the African Governance and Development Institute. 11/019, African Governance and Development Institute..
    12. Tamilina, Larysa & Tamilina, Natalya, 2014. "Heterogeneity in Institutional Effects on Economic Growth: Theory and Empirical Evidence," MPRA Paper 63170, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Madsen, Jakob B. & Raschky, Paul A. & Skali, Ahmed, 2015. "Does democracy drive income in the world, 1500–2000?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 175-195.
    14. Tausch, Arno, 2015. "Hofstede, Inglehart and beyond. New directions in empirical global value research," MPRA Paper 64282, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 11 May 2015.
    15. Vishal Jaunky, 2013. "Democracy and economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa: a panel data approach," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 45(2), pages 987-1008, October.
    16. Larysa Tamilina & Natalya Tamilina, 2014. "Heterogeneity in Institutional Effects on Economic Growth: Theory and Empirical Evidence," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 11(2), pages 205-249, December.
    17. Simplice A, Asongu, 2011. "Government quality determinants of stock market performance in developing countries," MPRA Paper 35508, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Daniel Sakyi & Samuel Adams, 2012. "Democracy, Government Spending and Economic Growth: The Case of Ghana, 1960–2008," Margin: The Journal of Applied Economic Research, National Council of Applied Economic Research, vol. 6(3), pages 361-383, August.
    19. Kaya MUHAMMED VEYSEL & Yılmaz SUAT SERHAT, 2019. "Does Economic Growth Need Democracy? An Application on Islamic Countries with System-GMM Approach," Economics and Applied Informatics, "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, issue 1, pages 156-161.
    20. Mathonnat, Clément & Minea, Alexandru, 2019. "Forms of democracy and economic growth volatility," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 594-603.
    21. Akçay Selçuk & Karasoy Alper, 2020. "Determinants of private investments in Turkey: Examining the role of democracy," Review of Economic Perspectives, Sciendo, vol. 20(1), pages 23-49, March.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Causality; Democracy; Economic Growth; Sub-Saharan Africa.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity

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