NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Alexander Rothenberg

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Working Papers

July 2010Collective Action in Diverse Sierra Leone Communities
with Rachel Glennerster, Edward Miguel: w16196
Scholars have pointed to ethnic and other social divisions as a leading cause of economic underdevelopment, due in part to their adverse effects on public good provision and collective action. We investigate this issue in post-war Sierra Leone, one of the world’s poorest countries. To address concerns over endogenous local ethnic composition, and in an advance over most existing work, we use an instrumental variables strategy relying on historical ethnic diversity data from the 1963 Sierra Leone Census. We find that local ethnic diversity is not associated with worse local public goods provision across a variety of outcomes, regression specifications, and diversity measures, and that these “zeros” are precisely estimated. We investigate the role that two leading mechanisms proposed in the ...
December 2006Sudden Flight and True Sudden Stops
with Francis E. Warnock: w12726
We extend the sudden stops literature by allowing crisis episodes to be caused by either the retreat of global investors, as is assumed but not shown in the extant literature, or the sudden flight of local investors. We find that almost half of the previously defined sudden stops are actually episodes of sudden flight. Compared to sudden flight, true sudden stops are bunched and are associated with greater slowdowns in economic activity and sharper currency depreciations. We show that the empirical regularities of sudden flight and true sudden stops are consistent with theoretical models that incorporate gross capital flows and information asymmetries.

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