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Clientelism and Patronage

Policy Brief: Resource transfers to local governments (West Bengal)

This EDI Policy Brief provides an accessible summary of key insights and findings from research for a case study on “Discretion versus rule-based budgeting and assignment in Indian governments“. Clientelism and vote buying are commonly mentioned symptoms of poor governance in…

Resource transfers to local governments (West Bengal)

This EDI Working Paper arises from the research undertaken for a case study on “Discretion versus rule-based budgeting and assignment in Indian governments“. The study shows how political support of household heads respond to receipt of different private and public good…

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic – Chapter 3

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 3: Politics and business Chapter outline Introduction Theoretical framework and methodology The early independence period: 1961–66 The situation at independence Origins of the position of Asians Development initiatives in early post-independence period Continued concern over social…

Clientelistic politics and economic development – an overview

This paper provides an overview of the literature on political clientelism  and its relation to economic development. It starts by describing the range of mechanisms used by political operatives to monitor how specific voters vote in order to target clientelistic…

Formal Institutions and Development in Low-Income Countries: Positive and Normative Theory

This paper reviews and discusses the literature on formal institutions and development. We first discuss the mapping from institutions to economic development, with the main emphasis on the effect on economic growth. We thereafter discuss two main literatures on endogenous…

Institutions and Development: An Overview of Case Studies

Institutions are commonly defined as the rules of the game that societies play which in shared understanding act as constraints on and guidelines for economic performance. This paper provides an overview of case studies from the two largest developing countries,…

Institutions, Growth Accelerations and Growth Collapses

A next step forward in examining economic growth and institutions is examining the frequency, timing and magnitude of “growth episodes”—discrete accelerations and de-celerations in medium to long run growth.  This will be challenging as to the extent that very long-run…

Foreign Aid and Governance: A survey

This paper surveys the literature on the two-way relationship between development aid and the quality of institutions in developing countries. Aid may improve institutions, e.g. when conditionality succeeds, but it can also have unintended effects that are typically negative, e.g….

Conflict and Development

In this review, we examine the links between economic development and social conflict. By economic development, we refer broadly to aggregate changes in per-capita income and wealth, or in the distribution of that wealth. By social conflict, we refer to…

Group inequality in democracies: lessons from cross-national experiences

Group inequality is a prominent feature of many modern democracies. The purpose of this paper is to take stock of what we know about the ways in which major democracies have viewed social groups and addressed inequalities between them. Countries…

At the Intersection: A Review of Institutions in Economic Development

We present accepted basic arguments on the role of institutions in development and then discuss the corresponding empirical evidence in support (or not) of those arguments. Methodologically, our emphasis is on experimental evidence wherever available, and thematically we focus on…

Spotlight on Inequality and Institutions

Sam Bowles of the Santa Fe Institute explains how institutions are the rules of the game, that regulate how we interact with each other. “If we don’t understand how institutions work, we can’t possibly understand how economies change,” he says….

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