NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Kevin K. Tsui

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers onlyInformation about this author at RePEc

Working Papers and Chapters

March 2008Political Entry, Public Policies, and the Economy
with Casey B. Mulligan: w13830
This paper presents a theory of competition for political leadership between incumbent leaders and their challengers in which the possible equilibrium political market structures range from pure monopoly (unchallenged dictatorship) to perfectly competitive (ideal democracy). Leaders are constrained by the threat of "entry" or their ability to tax (or both), so that regimes with no challengers may nonetheless implement policies in the public interest. We offer economic interpretations of why democratic countries are associated with higher wages, why resource abundant countries tend to be nondemocratic, and how technological change affects political development. By focusing on the incentives for political entry, we show how trade sanctions and other policies designed to promote democracy may...
October 2006Political Competitiveness
with Casey B. Mulligan: w12653
Political competitiveness - which many interpret as the degree of democracy - can be modeled as a monopolistic competition. All regimes are constrained by the threat of "entry," and thereby seek some combination of popular support and political entry barriers. This simple model predicts that many public policies are unrelated to political competitiveness, and that even unchallenged nondemocratic regimes should tax far short of their Laffer curve maximum. Economic sanctions, odious debt repudiation, and other policies designed to punish dictators can have the unintended consequences of increasing oppression and discouraging competition. Since entry barriers are a form of increasing returns, democratic countries (defined according to low entry barriers) are more likely to subdivide and n...

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers onlyInformation about this author at RePEc

 
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