Did Colonization Matter for Growth? An Empirical Exploration into the Historical Causes of Africa's Underdevelopment

Posted: 3 Mar 2003

See all articles by Graziella Bertocchi

Graziella Bertocchi

Università di Modena; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Fabio Canova

Bi norwegian business school

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Abstract

We investigate the impact of 20th-century European colonization on growth. We find that colonial heritage, as measured by the identity of the metropolitan ruler and by the degree of economic penetration, matters for the heterogeneity of growth performances in Africa. Colonial indicators are correlated with economic and sociopolitical variables that are commonly employed to explain growth and there are growth gains from decolonization. Colonial indicators also add significant explanatory power to worldwide growth regressions and are correlated with the Sub-Saharan Africa and the Latin America dummies.

JEL Classification: E00, O40, Q32, N10

Suggested Citation

Bertocchi, Graziella and Canova, Fabio, Did Colonization Matter for Growth? An Empirical Exploration into the Historical Causes of Africa's Underdevelopment. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=384660

Graziella Bertocchi

Università di Modena; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF)

Rome, 00187
Italy

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 7 / 9
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Fabio Canova (Contact Author)

Bi norwegian business school ( email )

Nydalsveien 37
Oslo, 0484
Norway

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