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Benin Institutional Diagnostic

Leadership Team:

  • Romain Houssa (University of Namur)


  • Benin

Project summary

Benin is one of the focus countries for our studies to develop an institutional diagnostic tool.

There are four stages to our approach for this research.

  • Stage 1: Identification and justification of institutional areas
  • Stage 2: Deep-dive thematic studies into key restrictive institutional areas
  • Stage 3: Integration of findings and proposals for potential institutional reforms
  • Stage 4: Dissemination of findings

Team leadership: Romain Houssa (University of Namur)

General project management: Tatiana Goetghebuer (Aide á la Décision Economique, ADE)

External advisers: François Bourguignon, Alexandre Biaou, Alain Babatoundé, John Igué, Mathias Hounkpe, Sebastien Sotindjo, Léonard Wantchekon, Paul Reding, and Etienne Yehoue

Project updates

The comprehensive analysis to contribute to an institutional diagnostic of Benin is underway. Stage 1 of the approach has been completed and a first assessment of institutional constraints (chapter 1) is available for download below. The survey analysis has been completed and insights will be published soon. Stage 2 thematic deep-dives are being conducted and chapter outlines are summarised below.

  • Chapter 1: A first assessment of institutional constraints on the development of Benin    
    • Romain Houssa (University of Namur)
    • Jean-Philippe Platteau (University of Namur)
    • Paul Reding (University of Namur)
  • Chapter 2: Understanding Benin’s institutional performance: insights from survey data analysis 
    • Romain Houssa (University of Namur)
  • Chapter 3: Business interests and clientelist contracts: evidence from Benin  
    • Léonard Wantchekon (Princeton University)
    • Rafael Chy (New York University)
    • Mathias Hounkpe (OSIWa)
  • Chapter 4: Tax gaps and tax collectors’ remuneration in Benin 
    • Grégoire Rota-Graziosi (CERDI-CNRS-UCA)
    • Emilie Caldeira (CERDI-CNRS-UCA)
  • Chapter 5: Regulation of a dominant sector: case study of cotton institutions in Benin
    • Barthelemy Honfoga (Université d’Abomey-Calavi)
    • Houinsou Dedehouanou (Université d’Abomey-Calavi)
  • Chapter 6: Land rights   
    • Gauthier Biaou (Université de Porto Novo)
    • Albert Honlonkoun (Université Abomey Calavi)
    • Jean-Philippe Platteau (University of Namur)
  • Chapter 7: The special relationship between Nigeria and Benin 
    • Aly Mbaye (University of Dakar)
    • Stephen S. Golub (Swarthmore College)


In 2017, we held a workshop in Cotonou, Benin, to bring together the key researchers and prepare our surveys for interviewees and other stakeholders.

Benin Institutional Diagnostic – survey preparation (Cotonou, November 2017)
Benin Institutional Diagnostic – survey preparation (Cotonou, November 2017)
Benin Institutional Diagnostic – survey preparation (Cotonou, November 2017)


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