Democracy and Education: Evidence from the Southern African Development Community
In this paper we investigate whether democracy in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has had any impact on education during the 1980-2009 period. The results, based on panel time-series analysis (we use the Pooled OLS, Fixed Effects and Fixed Effects with Instrumental Variables estimators), strongly suggest that democracy has played an important role in widening access to education in the region. These results are significant not only because democracy is in its infancy in the region and to make it work is an aim in itself in Africa, but also because education (a noble aim in itself) is an important determinant of growth and development. All in all, democracy, and the better governance that tends to be associated with it, is playing not only its expected redistributive role, but also an indirect, nevertheless significant and important, role on prosperity in the community.
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