Discussion paper

DP13659 Democracy Does Cause Growth: Comment

I revisit the causal relationship between democracy and growth as recently studied in Acemoglu, Naidu, Restrepo, and Robinson (2019, ANRR). I demonstrate the sensitivity of their results to sample selection by dropping a small number of observations in a non-random fashion and use these findings to motivate a generalisation of their empirical approach. My own analysis relaxes the assumption of (i) a common democracy-growth relationship, and of (ii) the absence of strong cross-section correlation. Adopting novel methods for policy evaluation I find a robust positive long-run effect of democracy albeit with only around half the magnitude of that found in ANRR.


Eberhardt, M (2019), ‘DP13659 Democracy Does Cause Growth: Comment‘, CEPR Discussion Paper No. 13659. CEPR Press, Paris & London. https://cepr.org/publications/dp13659