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Federalism, Regional Redistribution, and Country Stability

  • Enrico Spolaore

In recent decades a large number of new sovereign states has been created through secessions, decolonization and breakup of existing countries. Since 1990 the Soviet Union split into fifteen independent countries, Yugoslavia gave away to six sovereign states (not counting Kosovo), Czechoslavakia broke into two separate states, Eritrea seceded from Ethiopia, Namibia gained indepen- dence from South Africa, and Timor Leste left Indonesia. Today there are 193 internationally recognized sovereign states in the world, up from 74 in 1945 (the latest UN member is Montenegro, which joined in 2006). At the same time numerous countries, while remaining unified, have taken steps towards more regional autonomy and decentralization. Regional redistribution, decentralization and federalism have played a prominent role in political debates across Europe (e.g., in Belgium, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom) and all over the world--from Cananda to Colombia, from Nigeria to South Africa, from Iraq to India.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Tufts University in its series Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University with number 0726.

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Date of creation: 2008
Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:0726
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  9. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 2006. "Conflict, defense spending, and the number of nations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 91-120, January.
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  15. Sebastian M. Saiegh & Mariano Tommasi, 1999. "Why is Argentina’s Fiscal Federalism so Inefficient? Entering the Labyrinth," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 2, pages 169-209, May.
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  18. Le Breton, Michel & Weber, Shlomo, 2003. "The Art of Making Everybody Happy : How to Prevent a Secession," IDEI Working Papers 164, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  19. Pablo T. Spiller, 2003. "The Institutional Foundations of Public Policy: A Transactions Approach with Application to Argentina," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 281-306, October.
  20. Enrico Spolaore, 2004. "Economic Integration, International Conflict and Political Unions," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 94(5), pages 3-50, September.
  21. Michel Le Breton & Shlomo Weber, 2003. "The Art of Making Everybody Happy: How to Prevent a Secession," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 50(3), pages 4.
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