Institutional Change and Economic Performance: An Off-the-Cuff Comment on Professors Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson and James Robinson's Three Papers
18 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2006
Date Written: March 1, 2006
The three papers to which this comment is directed bring to vivid life the role of institutions in the economic performance of nations. The empirical examples the papers use illustrate specific institutional influences on at least two broad measures of economic performance: per capita income and urbanization. However, it is not clear (a) why similar changes led to dissimilar and often asymmetric outcomes, (b) how Atlantic trade produced progress for (Western) Europe early on, but not for other regions, and (c) how the growth of cities contributed to European trade while the urbanization phenomenon in general has tended to attract squalor living and inequality in many developing countries today. This paper comments on these and similar issues.
Keywords: institutions, institutional change, economic performance
JEL Classification: O10, O11, P16, F10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation