EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Dictators and Oligarchs: A Dynamic Theory of Contested Property Rights

Sergei Guriev () and Konstantin Sonin
Additional contact information
Konstantin Sonin: State University Higher School of Economics

Post-Print from HAL

Abstract: In an economy with weak economic and political institutions, the major institutional choices are made strategically by oligarchs and dictators. The conventional wisdom presumes that as rent-seeking is harmful for oligarchs themselves, institutions such as property rights will emerge spontaneously. We explicitly model a dynamic game between the oligarchs and a dictator who can contain rent-seeking. The oligarchs choose either a weak dictator (who can be overthrown by an individual oligarch) or a strong dictator (who can only be replaced via a consensus of oligarchs). In equilibrium, no dictator can commit to both: (i) protecting the oligarchs' property rights from the other oligarchs and (ii) not expropriating oligarchs himself. We show that a weak dictator does not limit rent-seeking. A strong dictator does reduce rent-seeking but also expropriates individual oligarchs. We show that even though eliminating rent-seeking is Pareto optimal, weak dictators do get appointed in equilibrium and rent-seeking continues. This outcome is especially likely when economic environment is highly volatile.

Keywords: Property rights; Oligarchy; Dictatorship; Non-democratic politics (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2009-02
Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal-sciencespo.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03415733
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (18) Track citations by RSS feed

Published in Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, 2009, 93 (1-2), pp.1 - 13. ⟨10.1016/j.jpubeco.2008.07.003⟩

There are no downloads for this item, see the EconPapers FAQ for hints about obtaining it.

Related works:
Journal Article: Dictators and oligarchs: A dynamic theory of contested property rights (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: Dictators and Oligarchs: A Dynamic Theory of Contested Property Rights (2008) Downloads
Working Paper: Dictators and Oligarchs: A Dynamic Theory of Contested Property Rights (2007) Downloads
Working Paper: Dictators and Oligarchs: A Dynamic Theory of Contested Property Rights (2007) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:hal:journl:hal-03415733

DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2008.07.003

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in Post-Print from HAL
Bibliographic data for series maintained by CCSD ().

 
Page updated 2022-06-11
Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-03415733