Is Democracy a Normal Good? Evidence from Democratic Movements

Posted: 12 Oct 2000

See all articles by Jenny Minier

Jenny Minier

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics

Abstract

A frequent assertion of economists and political scientists is that democracy is a normal good, or that higher incomes lead citizens to "desire" more democracy. This assertion, however, has been difficult to test directly. I introduce a data set of democratic movements, and use it to address the relationship between income and the demand for democracy. Logit analysis of the estimated probability that a democratic movement occurs in an authoritarian country suggests that this probability is increasing in income per capita up to a level of approximately $5,000. Unlike previous results, this does not suggest that all countries will become democratic once they pass some income threshold.

JEL Classification: O1, D7

Suggested Citation

Minier, Jenny, Is Democracy a Normal Good? Evidence from Democratic Movements. Southern Economic Journal. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=243608

Jenny Minier (Contact Author)

University of Kentucky - Department of Economics ( email )

335 Business and Economics Building
Lexington, KY 40506
United States

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