Infrastructure Provision, Politics and Religion: Insights from Tunisia's New Democracy

25 Pages Posted: 28 Apr 2020

See all articles by Maleke Fourati

Maleke Fourati

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics

Antonio Estache

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES)

Date Written: March 2020

Abstract

This paper analyzes the relationship between access to infrastructure services and support for religious parties based on the evidence produced by a recent democratic experience in Tunisia in which a religious political party, Ennahdha, governed from 2011 to 2014. The experience points to a complex relationship. In the 2011 election, areas with higher access are associated with higher support for Ennahdha than areas with lower access. In the 2014 election, however, infrastructure access is positively correlated with support for the party in areas where access had improved but negatively correlated with support for the party in areas that already had high access. A possible pragmatic general implication is that, to be politically competitive, religious parties, cannot bet solely on their religious commitment to provide basic services, including infrastructure, to the poor. They need to recognize the multiplicity of voter's concerns and their evolving agenda.

Keywords: Infrastructures, government policy, religion and institutions

JEL Classification: H54, L98, Z12, D02

Suggested Citation

Fourati, Maleke and Estache, Antonio, Infrastructure Provision, Politics and Religion: Insights from Tunisia's New Democracy (March 2020). Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Vol. 91, Issue 1, pp. 29-53, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3586878 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/apce.12242

Maleke Fourati (Contact Author)

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics ( email )

High Street
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

Antonio Estache

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium
32 (0)2 6503838 (Phone)

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