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Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN) Working Paper Series

No 1090:
Did Africa’s First Choices Matter? Growth Legacies of Leaders at Independence

Christina Mangaard Jørgensen and Christian Bjørnskov ()

Abstract: We explore the potential effects of the first leaders of Sub-Saharan Africa. We first outline a set of theoretical reasons for why leaders may matter particularly at the critical juncture of African independence and why this influence may be persistent. In an unbalanced panel from 40 African countries observed since independence, we find evidence of strongly persistent effects of the education of African leaders. Only military coups seem able to break the persistent negative influence of this characteristic.

Keywords: Africa; Leaders; Institutions; Development; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: O11; O43; O55; P16; (follow links to similar papers)

53 pages, October 12, 2015

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