Title

Ethnic Diversity, Property Rights and Natural Resources

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title

Developing Economies

Publisher

Wiley

Publication Date

11-19-2010

Volume

48

Issue

4

First Page

473

Last Page

495

Abstract

Countries rich in natural resources constitute both development failures and successes depending on their underlying socioeconomic fundamentals. Recent empirical evidence and theoretical work provide support for a resource-curse hypothesis based on ethnic fractionalization. There is also increasing empirical evidence suggesting that ethnic heterogeneity based on polarization is a strong deterrent of economic growth. In this paper, we explore the interlinkages between natural resource abundance and both measures of ethnic heterogeneity. In a two–simultaneous equation system, we assess the effects of fractionalization and polarization on property-rights protection, and thereby on growth, both directly as well as in interaction with our resource-abundance proxy. We find that ethnic polarization is more likely to have a direct negative impact on the effectiveness of property rights in a resource-rich context, which as we explain may suggest that different ethnic groups treat the contestable resource base as a semi-public good.

DOI

10.1111/j.1746-1049.2010.00116.x

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