Regimes and Industrialization

61 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2020

See all articles by John Gerring

John Gerring

University of Texas at Austin

Haakon Gjerløw

University of Oslo, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Political Science, Students

Carl Henrik Knutsen

University of Oslo - Department of Political Science

Date Written: April 27, 2020

Abstract

A large literature addresses the impact of regimes on domestic policies and outcomes, e.g., education, health, inequality, redistribution, public spending, wages, infrastructure, volatility, productivity, and economic growth. We add to this literature by focusing on how regime type relates to another vital outcome, namely industrialization. We argue that autocratic leaders are more likely to adopt an economic model of development centered on heavy industry because of three factors that distinguish democratic and autocratic regimes: different social bases, different security concerns, and different policy tools. Accordingly, autocracies have stronger incentives and better capabilities to pursue a rapid and comprehensive course of industrialization. We test the hypothesis that autocracy enhances industrialization by using different measures of industrialization in a dataset spanning 200 years and most countries of the world. After a comprehensive series of tests, we conclude that industrialization stands out as one of the few areas where autocracies may enjoy a significant advantage over democracies.

Suggested Citation

Gerring, John and Gjerløw, Haakon and Knutsen, Carl Henrik, Regimes and Industrialization (April 27, 2020). V-Dem Working Paper 2020: 99, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3586482 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3586482

John Gerring (Contact Author)

University of Texas at Austin ( email )

2317 Speedway
Austin, TX 78712
United States

Haakon Gjerløw

University of Oslo, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Political Science, Students ( email )

Moltke Moesvei 31
Oslo
Norway

Carl Henrik Knutsen

University of Oslo - Department of Political Science ( email )

Moltke Moesvei 31
Olso, 0851
Norway

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