Democracy's mixed blessings
Are liberal-democratic constitutions necessarily good for economic transformation?
African countries need economic transformation. They need it not just to raise general living standards but to create conditions in which people can enjoy social and political freedoms, including the right to choose their rulers. Economic advance and political progress are clearly linked in this sense.
A Joint Statement (see box) from five major research programmes argue, however, that whether liberal-democratic political constitutions are good for economic transformation is a much more complicated matter. One reason is that constitutions don’t shape people’s behaviour – similar constitutions have very different effects depending on countries’ economic and social structures.
This issue is opened for discussion in a new post on the blog "The political economy of development in Africa."
Follow the blog - and do contribute to the discussion!