Do We See Convergence in Institutional Quality? A Cross-Country Analysis

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Differences in the quality of institutions may explain differences in per capita income. Yet, we know relatively little on how institutions evolve. This paper contributes to such knowledge by testing for convergence in legal, bureaucratic and administrative institutional quality. Using cross-section and panel methods on a large sample of countries from the 1970s to 2010, we find that countries with initially poor institutions tended to slowly catch up, both when they shared the same initial conditions and when they did not. However, the convergence process seems to be a temporary effect following the end of the Cold War.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-185
Number of pages19
JournalThe Journal of Development Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Convergence
  • Institutions
  • Institutional Change
  • Growth
  • Economic Development

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global inequalities
  • Policy@Manchester
  • Global Development Institute


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