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Artificial States

Author

Listed:
  • Alberto Alesina
  • William Easterly
  • Janina Matuszeski

Abstract

Artificial states are those in which political borders do not coincide with a division of nationalities desired by the people on the ground. We propose and compute for all countries in the world two new measures how artificial states are. One is based on measuring how borders split ethnic groups into two separate adjacent countries. The other one measures how straight land borders are, under the assumption the straight land borders are more likely to be artificial. We then show that these two measures seem to be highly correlated with several measures of political and economic success.

Suggested Citation

  • Alberto Alesina & William Easterly & Janina Matuszeski, 2006. "Artificial States," NBER Working Papers 12328, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12328 Note: POL
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alesina, Alberto & Devleeschauwer, Arnaud & Easterly, William & Kurlat, Sergio & Wacziarg, Romain, 2003. "Fractionalization," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 155-194, June.
    2. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-1056.
    3. Enrico Spolaore & Alberto Alesina & Romain Wacziarg, 2000. "Economic Integration and Political Disintegration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1276-1296, December.
    4. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-279, April.
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    6. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 271-303, September.
    7. 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.
    8. repec:hrv:faseco:30747160 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bosker, Maarten & de Ree, Joppe, 2014. "Ethnicity and the spread of civil war," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 206-221.
    2. Desmet, Klaus & Le Breton, Michel & Ortuno-Ortin, Ignacio, 2006. "Nation Formation and Genetic Diversity," IDEI Working Papers 133, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    3. de Melo, Jaime & Tsikata, Yvonne, 2014. "Regional integration in Africa: Challenges and prospects," WIDER Working Paper Series 037, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    4. Christopher Blattman & Edward Miguel, 2009. "Civil War: A Review of Fifty Years of Research," Working Papers id:2231, eSocialSciences.
    5. Alberto Alesina & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2011. "Segregation and the Quality of Government in a Cross Section of Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 1872-1911, August.
    6. Berger, Daniel & Corvalan, Alejandro & Easterly, William & Satyanath, Shanker, 2013. "Do superpower interventions have short and long term consequences for democracy?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 22-34.
    7. James C. Rockey, 2007. "Which Democracies Pay Higher Wages?," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 07/600, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
    8. Shimeles, Abebe, 2014. "Growth and Poverty in Africa: Shifting Fortunes and New Perspectives," IZA Discussion Papers 8751, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Davis, Lewis S. & Williamson, Claudia R., 2016. "Culture and the regulation of entry," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 1055-1083.
    10. Klaus Desmet & Michel Le Breton & Ignacio Ortuno-Ortin & Shlomo Weber, 2008. "Stability of Nations and Genetic Diversity," Working Papers 003-08, International School of Economics at TSU, Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia.
    11. Pei Li & Yi Lu & Tuan-Heww Sng, 2017. "Artificial Administrative Boundaries: Evidence from China," CEH Discussion Papers 09, Centre for Economic History, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
    12. Carmignani, Fabrizio & Kler, Parvinder, 2016. "The geographical spillover of armed conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 109-119.
    13. MILLRINE, Mark & VUJIC, Suncica, 2017. "Revisiting Easterly and Levine (1997): Replication and extension," Working Papers 2017007, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
    14. Xiaohuan Lan & Ben G. Li, 2015. "The Economics of Nationalism," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, pages 294-325.
    15. José Garcia Montalvo & Marta Reynal-Querol, 2017. "Ethnic diversity and growth: revisiting the evidence," Economics Working Papers 1585, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    16. Christopher Blattman & Edward Miguel, 2010. "Civil War," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(1), pages 3-57, March.
    17. repec:kap:jecgro:v:22:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10887-016-9139-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Bruno Frey, 2013. "European unification: a new proposal," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 24(4), pages 285-294, December.
    19. Olsson, Ola & Hansson, Gustav, 2011. "Country size and the rule of law: Resuscitating Montesquieu," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(5), pages 613-629, June.
    20. Ezcurra, Roberto & Rodr�guez-Pose, Andr�s, 2017. "Does ethnic segregation matter for spatial inequality? A cross-country analysis," CEPR Discussion Papers 11913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    21. Swee, Eik Leong, 2015. "Together or separate? Post-conflict partition, ethnic homogenization, and the provision of public schooling," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 1-15.
    22. Phillip Garner, 2008. "Congo and Korea: a study in divergence," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(3), pages 326-346.
    23. Jimenez-Ayora, Pablo & Ulubaşoğlu, Mehmet Ali, 2015. "What underlies weak states? The role of terrain ruggedness," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 167-183.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • F50 - International Economics - - International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy - - - General

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