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Doing Well by Doing Good: The Impact of Foreign Aid on Foreign Public Opinion

Quarterly Journal of Political Science, Vol 9, Issue 1, pp. 87-114, March 2014

51 Pages Posted: 1 Dec 2013 Last revised: 20 Jun 2015

Benjamin E. Goldsmith

School of Politics & International Relations

Yusaku Horiuchi

Dartmouth College - Department of Government

Terence Wood

Australian National University (ANU) - Crawford School of Public Policy

Date Written: January 31, 2014

Abstract

Does foreign aid extended by one country improve that country’s image among populations of recipient countries? Using a multinational survey, we show that a United States aid program targeted to address HIV and AIDS substantially improves perceptions of the U.S. Our identification strategy for causal inference is to use instrumental variables measuring the magnitude of the HIV/AIDS problem in aid recipient countries. Our finding implies that in addition to its potential humanitarian benefits, foreign aid that is targeted, sustained, effective, and visible can serve an important strategic goal for those countries that give it: fostering positive perceptions among foreign publics. By doing good, a country can do well.

Keywords: foreign aid, U.S. foreign policy, HIV, AIDS, PEPFAR, public opinion, instrumental variables

JEL Classification: A12, F35, I18, O55

Suggested Citation

Goldsmith, Benjamin E. and Horiuchi, Yusaku and Wood, Terence, Doing Well by Doing Good: The Impact of Foreign Aid on Foreign Public Opinion (January 31, 2014). Quarterly Journal of Political Science, Vol 9, Issue 1, pp. 87-114, March 2014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2361691 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2361691

Benjamin Goldsmith

School of Politics & International Relations ( email )

Canberra
Australia

Yusaku Horiuchi (Contact Author)

Dartmouth College - Department of Government ( email )

204 Silsby Hall
HB 6108
Hanover, NH 03755
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sites.dartmouth.edu/horiuchi/

Terence Wood

Australian National University (ANU) - Crawford School of Public Policy ( email )

7 Liversidge Street
Lennox Crossing
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory ACT 0200
Australia

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