NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Reform from Within

Aaron Tornell

NBER Working Paper No. 6497
Issued in April 1998
NBER Program(s):   IFM

We present a model of endogenous institutional change that rationalizes reforms that have taken place in the context of economic crisis and drastic political change. Most of the reforms have been initiated by powerholders, even though they have ended worse off relative to the status quo. The first point we make is that reform is the tool used by some powerful groups to limit the power of their political opponents. The second point is that groups with common access' to the economy's resources find it individually rational to overappropriate resources. As a result the economy deteriorates. When the economy reaches a crisis conflict among groups erupts. Reform is the result of this conflict.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w6497

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