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The Political Economics of Non-democracy

Georgy Egorov () and Konstantin Sonin ()
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Georgy Egorov: Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management

No 2020-142, Working Papers from Becker Friedman Institute for Research In Economics

Abstract: We survey recent theoretical and empirical literature on political economy of non-democracies. Dictators face many challenges to their rule: internal, such as palace coups or breakdown of their support coalition, or external, such as mass protests or revolutions. We analyze strategic decisions made by dictators — hiring political loyalists to positions that require competence, restricting media freedom at the cost of sacrificing bureaucratic efficiency, running a propaganda campaign, organizing electoral fraud, purging associates and opponents, and repressing citizens — as driven by the desire to maximize the regime’s chances of staying in power. We argue that the key to understanding the functioning and ultimately the fate of a nondemocratic regime is the information flows within the regime, and the institutions that govern these information flows.

Keywords: Nondemocratic politics; authoritarianism; dictatorship; bureaucracy; electoral fraud; protests; revolutions; coup d’etat; media freedom; propaganda; censorship; repressions; institutionalized ruling party (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C73 D72 D74 D82 D83 P16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 51 pages
Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm and nep-pol
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https://repec.bfi.uchicago.edu/RePEc/pdfs/BFI_WP_2020142.pdf (application/pdf)

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Working Paper: The Political Economics of Non-democracy (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: The Political Economics of Non-democracy (2020) Downloads
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