Does an Inclusive Citizenship Law Promote Economic Development?

38 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2019

See all articles by Patrick A. Imam

Patrick A. Imam

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Kangni Kpodar

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Date Written: January 2019

Abstract

This paper analyzes the impact of citizenship laws on economic development. We first document the evolution of citizenship laws around the world, highlighting the main features of jus soli, jus sanguinis as well as mixed regimes, and shedding light on the channels through which they could have differentiated impact on economic development. We then compile a data set of citizenship laws around the world. Using cross-country regressions, panel-data techniques, as well as the synthetic control method and subjecting the results to a battery of tests, we find robust evidence that jus soli laws-being more inclusive-lead to higher income levels than alternative citizenship rules in developing countries, though to a less extent in countries with stronger institutional environment.

Keywords: Economic development, Political economy, Citizenship laws, legal origin, International Migration

JEL Classification: P16, K40, F22, O15

Suggested Citation

Imam, Patrick A. and Kpodar, Kangni, Does an Inclusive Citizenship Law Promote Economic Development? (January 2019). IMF Working Paper No. 19/3, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3333748

Patrick A. Imam (Contact Author)

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

Kangni Kpodar

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

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