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Democracy and Economic Development

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Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Chittawan Chanagul, 2009. "Democracy and Economic Development," Vienna Economics Papers 0911, University of Vienna, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:vie:viennp:0911
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Elias Papaioannou & Gregorios Siourounis, 2008. "Democratisation and Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(532), pages 1520-1551, October.
    2. Mueller, Dennis C. & Stratmann, Thomas, 2003. "The economic effects of democratic participation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(9-10), pages 2129-2155, September.
    3. Adam Przeworski & Fernando Limongi, 1993. "Political Regimes and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 51-69, Summer.
    4. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson & Pierre Yared, 2008. "Income and Democracy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 808-842.
    5. Papaioannou, Elias & Siourounis, Gregorios, 2008. "Economic and social factors driving the third wave of democratization," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, pages 365-387.
    6. 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.
    7. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A. & Yared, Pierre, 2009. "Reevaluating the modernization hypothesis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1043-1058, November.
    8. 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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    10. McMillan, John, 1994. "Policy Paper 11: China’s Nonconformist Reforms," Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, Working Paper Series qt9cn9b13c, Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, University of California.
    11. Gallup, J.L. & Sachs, J.D. & Mullinger, A., 1999. "Geography and Economic Development," Papers 1, Chicago - Graduate School of Business.
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    14. Przeworski,Adam & Alvarez,Michael E. & Cheibub,Jose Antonio & Limongi,Fernando, 2000. "Democracy and Development," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521793797, March.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • O57 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries

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