Tolerance and Economic Growth Revisited: A Note

13 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2012

See all articles by Eduard J. Bomhoff

Eduard J. Bomhoff

Monash University Malaysia campus

Grace Lee

Monash University, Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2012

Abstract

Berggren and Elinder (BE) in this journal write on the relationship between the degree of tolerance in a nation and its rate of economic growth. They are disturbed to find in their cross sections that faster economic growth statistically goes together with intolerance of homosexuals. In this comment, we revisit the issue and demonstrate that the concern expressed by BE is unwarranted if we properly account for “conditional convergence” in the regressions for economic growth. Other things being equal, a country grows faster if it starts from a poorer initial position. In the BE dataset, China since the Deng reforms is a prime example. At about the same time, another group of countries managed to accelerate their economic growth after a long period of stagnation: the ex-communist countries in central and Eastern Europe. Many of these nations also grew exceptionally fast for a number of years, once freedom had been regained and the initial chaos overcome. With simple modeling of these historical initial conditions, we find no statistical pattern that associates bias against homosexuals with weaker economic growth. Our results are robust under alternative specifications.

Keywords: Tolerance, Growth

JEL Classification: O40, Z13

Suggested Citation

Bomhoff, Eduard J. and Lee, Grace, Tolerance and Economic Growth Revisited: A Note (2012). Public Choice, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2136148

Eduard J. Bomhoff

Monash University Malaysia campus ( email )

Jalan Lagoon Selatan
Kuala Lumpur, Selangor 46150
Malaysia

Grace Lee (Contact Author)

Monash University, Department of Economics ( email )

Jalan Lagoon Selatan
Selangor Darul Ehsan
Selangor, 46150
Malaysia

Do you want regular updates from SSRN on Twitter?

Paper statistics

Downloads
28
Abstract Views
354
PlumX Metrics