Socio-economic policies and the efficiency of democratic reforms

This is a cross-post of a piece written by Kaouthar Gazdar (PhD in Economics, University of Sousse), Hajer Kratou (PhD student in Economics, University of Carthage & University of Auvergne) & Zeinab Sabet (GDNet) The fourth and last session of the workshop’s first day had a special focus on economic and social policies, and the efficiency of democratic reforms. [caption id="" align="alignright" width="200"]Eberhard Kienle (CNRS Paris/IEP Grenoble) Eberhard Kienle (CNRS Paris/IEP Grenoble)[/caption] The session introduced two papers by Eberhard Kienle (CNRS Paris/IEP Grenoble) and Pierre-Guillaume Méon (Université Libre de Bruxelles). In his paper, Kienle examines the economic and social policies in Tunisia and Egypt in the aftermath of authoritarianism. Despite the intricacy of the Arab spring, it seems fair the assumption that large scale popular protests and the related transformation of political regimes were prompted by a combination of socio-economic and political factors. In a nutshell, authoritarian government had over years and decades prevented numerous actors to articulate their grievances in ways that would have allowed alleviating and addressing them effectively. Many of these grievances were related to socio- economic developments that widened the gap between income and opportunities on the one hand; and expectations based on past experience, official propaganda and comparisons with the outside world on the other. [caption id="" align="alignright" width="200"]Pierre-Guillaume Méon (Université Libre de Bruxelles) Pierre-Guillaume Méon (Université Libre de Bruxelles)[/caption] The second paper, by Pierre-Guillaume Méon and Khalid Sekkat, (Université Libre de Bruxelles), endeavors to investigate the impact of democratic and autocratic transitions on institutional outcomes, such as corruption, bureaucratic quality, among others. By looking at a panel of 39 developing countries over the period 1984-2010, Meon and Sekkat’s findings show that democratic transitions are on average followed, at least after six years, by an improvement in governance; while a short-lived deterioration of governance can on average be observed approximately after six or seven years of autocratic transitions. Read more of this post Watch our interview with Eberhard Kienle Watch our interview with Pierre-Guillaume Méon
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