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Democracy and Economic Development

With the goal of freeing the world from poverty, some Western authorities have consistently insisted on promoting democracy in totalitarian states in the past decades. Seeing that democratic political system are stably established more and more in many countries, an opportunity arises to determine the effects of democracy on economic development. Taking advantage of this fact, this paper attempts to explore whether or not democracy contributes largely to prosperity of a nation. The conclusion is that, whereas democracy acts as a catalyst that influences prosperity in many already well-to-do nations, democracy per se is not significantly beneficial to low initial income countries. Another interesting point found in this study is that the Western colonialism tends to be one of the most significant factors in explaining poor economic development in many regions of the world today.

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File URL: http://homepage.univie.ac.at/Papers.Econ/RePEc/vie/viennp/vie0911.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Vienna, Department of Economics in its series Vienna Economics Papers with number 0911.

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Date of creation: Nov 2009
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Handle: RePEc:vie:viennp:0911
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.univie.ac.at/vwl

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  1. Gallup, J.L. & Sachs, J.D. & Mullinger, A., 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," Papers 1, Chicago - Graduate School of Business.
  2. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson, 2004. "Institutions as the Fundamental Cause of Long-Run Growth," NBER Working Papers 10481, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. McMillan, John, 1994. "China’s Nonconformist Reforms," Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, Working Paper Series qt9cn9b13c, Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, University of California.
  4. Elias Papaioannou & Gregorios Siourounis, 2007. "Democratization And Growth," CEDI Discussion Paper Series 07-13, Centre for Economic Development and Institutions(CEDI), Brunel University.
  5. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson & Pierre Yared, 2005. "Income and Democracy," NBER Working Papers 11205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 2002. "Participation and Development: Perspectives from the Comprehensive Development Paradigm," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(2), pages 163-82, June.
  7. Dennis C. Mueller & Thomas Stratmann, 2002. "The Economic Effects of Democratic Participation," CESifo Working Paper Series 656, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Papaioannou, Elias & Siourounis, Gregorios, 2008. "Economic and Social Factors Driving the Third Wave of Democratization," CEPR Discussion Papers 6986, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A & Yared, Pierre, 2007. "Reevaluating the Modernization Hypothesis," CEPR Discussion Papers 6430, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Adam Przeworski & Fernando Limongi, 1993. "Political Regimes and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 51-69, Summer.
  11. Robert J. Barro, 1999. "Determinants of Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(S6), pages S158-S183, December.
  12. John Luke Gallup & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Andrew Mellinger, 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," CID Working Papers 1, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
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