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Feb
13
UCLouvain Economics Seminar - Alex Armand (Nova School of Business and Economics)
By UCLouvain Economics Seminar

Alex Armand

(Nova School of Business and Economics)

will give a presentation on

Does Information Break the Political Resource Curse? Experimental Evidence from Mozambique

Abstract:

The political resource curse is the idea that natural resources can lead to the deteriorationof public policies through corruption and rent-seeking by those closest to political power. Oneprominent consequence is the emergence of conflict. This paper takes this theory to the datafor the case of Mozambique, where a substantial discovery of natural gas recently took place.Focusing on the anticipation of a resource boom and the behavior of local political structuresand communities, a large-scale field experiment was designed and implemented to follow thedissemination of information about the newly-discovered resources. Two types of treatmentsprovided variation in the degree of dissemination: one with information targeting only localpolitical leaders, the other with information and deliberation activities targeting communitiesat large. A wide variety of theory-driven outcomes is measured through surveys, behavioralactivities, lab-in-the-field experiments, and georeferenced administrative data about local con-flict. Information given only to leaders increases elite capture and rent-seeking, while infor-mation and deliberation targeted at citizens increases mobilization and accountability-relatedoutcomes, and decreases violence. While the political resource curse is likely to be in play,the dissemination of information to communities at large has a countervailing effect.

Date
13 February
Time
12:45 - 14:00
Location
Doyen 22
Place des Doyens, 1
Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve,
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