nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2005‒02‒27
four papers chosen by
Suzanne McCoskey
US Naval Academy

  1. Listen to the Radio! Monitoring, Media and Capture of Public Funds in Madagascar By Nathalie Francken; Bart Minten; Johan F.M. Swinnen
  2. How Do Political Changes Influence U.S. Bilateral Aid Allocations? Evidence from Panel Data By Fleck, Robert K.; Kilby, Christopher
  3. Why doesn’t Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries? An Empirical Investigation By Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan; Laura Alfaro; Vadym Volosovych
  4. Colonisation, School and Development in Africa. An empirical analysis By Denis Cogneau

  1. By: Nathalie Francken; Bart Minten; Johan F.M. Swinnen
    Abstract: Local capture of public expenditures is an important problem for service delivery and poverty reduction in developing countries. Standard anticorruption institutions may not be effective, as these tend often to be corrupt themselves. This paper analyses the impact of monitoring and information distribution through the mass media on local capture of public expenditures on education in Madagascar in 2002-2003. We use survey data to assess capture in both cash and in-kind programs, at district and at school level. We find that local capture can be successfully constrained through a combination of monitoring and media programs. In addition to monitoring by the beneficiaries (“from below”), central monitoring (“from above”) is important. More transparent funding mechanisms and access to mass media reduce capture. However, the impact of the media is conditional on the characteristics of the population. In communes characterized by high illiteracy, the impact of newspaper and poster campaigns is limited, and radios are more important to reduce capture.
  2. By: Fleck, Robert K. (Montana State University Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics); Kilby, Christopher (Vassar College Department of Economics)
    Abstract: The allocation of development aid depends on political factors in countries that provide aid and in countries that receive aid. To provide new insight into the role of these factors, this paper conducts an econometric analysis of panel data on U.S. bilateral aid to 119 countries from 1960 to 1997. For each aid-receiving country, we employ variables to proxy for four aid allocation criteria: development concerns, strategic importance to the U.S., commercial importance to the U.S., and the degree of democratization. We find evidence that each of these variables influences the allocation of aid, although the evidence is stronger for some criteria (development concerns, commercial importance) than for others (strategic importance, degree of democratization). Furthermore, we find that the pattern of aid allocation depends on the composition of the U.S. government. When the president and Congress are liberal, development concerns appear to have more weight in the allocation process than when the president and/or Congress are more conservative. When the Congress is more conservative, commercial concerns appear to have more weight than when the Congress is liberal. These findings have practical importance in light of current attempts to overhaul the allocation of both bilateral and multilateral aid.
    Date: 2005–02
  3. By: Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan (Department of Economics, University of Houston); Laura Alfaro (Department of Economics, Harvard Business School); Vadym Volosovych (Department of Economics, University of Houston)
    Abstract: We examine the role of different explanations for the lack of flows of capital from rich to poor countries—the “Lucas paradox”—in an empirical framework. Broadly speaking, the theoretical explanations for this paradox include differences in fundamentals affecting the production structure versus international capital market imperfections. Our cross-country regressions show that, for the period 1971-1998, institutional quality is the most important causal variable explaining the “Lucas paradox”. Human capital and asymmetric information play a role as determinants of capital inflows but these variables cannot fully account for the paradox.
    Keywords: capital inflows, fundamentals, institutions, international capital market imperfections, neoclassical model
    JEL: F21 F41 O1
    Date: 2003–12
  4. By: Denis Cogneau (DIAL, IRD, Paris)
    Abstract: Macroeconomic data on 45 countries are combined with microeconomic data on 4 case-study countries to reveal significant differences in the levels of education attained under the different colonial powers in Africa during the colonial period. In 1960, former British colonies exhibited higher educational performance. These differences are robust to the control of some pre-colonial factors and have persisted over time until 1990. However, the education differential did not give rise to either income per capita or life expectancy differentials. Urbanisation occurred at a faster rate in the former French colonies. Microeconomic data for the case-study countries show indeed that private returns to education tend to be lower in the former British colonies. _________________________________ En combinant des données macro-économiques sur 45 pays et des données micro-économiques sur 4 pays comparables, nous révélons l’existence de différences entre les niveaux d’éducation atteints en Afrique selon l’identité du colonisateur. En 1960, les ex-colonies britanniques affichaient une performance éducative supérieure. Ces différences sont robustes au contrôle de certains facteurs pré-coloniaux et ont persisté dans le temps jusqu’en 1990. Cependant, le différentiel d’éducation ne s’est pas transformé en différences de revenu ou d’espérance de vie. Les ex-colonies françaises se sont urbanisées plus rapidement. Les données microéconomiques sur les pays d’étude montrent bien que les rendements privés de l’éducation tendent à être moins élevés dans les ex-colonies britanniques.
    Keywords: Colonization, School, Development, Growth, Africa, Colonisation, Ecole, Développement, Croissance, Afrique.
    JEL: N37 O40 P51
    Date: 2003–03

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