Effective Aid: How Democracy Allows Development Aid to Improve the Quality of Life

Posted: 7 May 2005  

Stephen Kosack

The Brookings Institution; Yale University - Department of Political Science

Abstract

Research into foreign aid has mostly focused on its ability to affect economic (i.e., GDP per capita) growth. Conclusions have been mixed. I consider aid's effectiveness differently: by its ability to improve quality of life. I find that, though aid does not affect quality of life in the aggregate, it is effective when combined with democracy, and ineffective (and possibly harmful) in autocracies. The results suggest that aid would be more effective if it were combined with efforts to encourage democratization.

Keywords: Foreign aid, democratization, sustainable development, Human Development Index

JEL Classification: F35, O10, H50

Suggested Citation

Kosack, Stephen, Effective Aid: How Democracy Allows Development Aid to Improve the Quality of Life. World Development, Vol. 31, No. 1, pp. 1-22, January 2003. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=715741

Stephen Kosack (Contact Author)

The Brookings Institution ( email )

1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

Yale University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Box 208269
New Haven, DC 06520-8269
United States

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