The Long Shadow of History? The Impact of Colonial Labor Institutions on Economic Development in Peru

35 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2020

See all articles by Leticia Arroyo Abad

Leticia Arroyo Abad

CUNY - Queens College

Noel Maurer

George Washington University

Date Written: August 03, 2019

Abstract

Recent scholarship claims that extractive colonial institutions explain the lackluster performance of Latin American economies today. We examine forced labor in colonial Peru. We find that while coercive labor institutions led to a drop in the indigenous population until the seventeenth century, they lost their influence over the remainder of the colonial period. We check for persistence using post-colonial outcomes; there is none. To address endogeneity, we look at other potential extraction mechanisms and exploit policies that exempted certain zones as an instrumental variable. Our results are consistent with existing historical narratives that point to institutional adaptation over time.

Keywords: Forced labor, Public Goods, Peru

JEL Classification: O43, H41, N36

Suggested Citation

Arroyo Abad, Leticia and Maurer, Noel, The Long Shadow of History? The Impact of Colonial Labor Institutions on Economic Development in Peru (August 03, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3559510 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3559510

Leticia Arroyo Abad (Contact Author)

CUNY - Queens College ( email )

65-30 Kissena Blvd
Flushing, NY 11367-1597
United States

Noel Maurer

George Washington University ( email )

2121 I Street NW
Washington, DC 20052
United States

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