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Access to justice and entrepreneurship: evidence from Brazil’s Special Civil Tribunals

Guilherme Lichand and Rodrigo Soares
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Guilherme Lichand: Harvard University

No 591, Textos para discussão from Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil)

Abstract: Entrepreneurship is usually indentified as an important determinant of aggregate productivity and long-term growth. The determinants of entrepreneurship, nevertheless, are not entirely understood. A recent literature has linked entrepreneurship to the development of the justice system. This paper contributes to this literature by evaluating the role of access to justice in determining the incidence of entrepreneurship. We explore the creation of Special Civil Tribunals in the Brazilian state of São Paulo during the 1990s. Special Civil Tribunals increased the geographic presence of the justice system, simplified judicial procedures, and increased the speed of adjudication of disputes. Using census data, and difference-in-differences and instrumental variable strategies, we find that implementation of Special Civil Tribunals led to increased entrepreneurship, defined as the probability that individuals are employers or selfemployed. Results are particularly strong and robust for the case of self-employment, and do not seem to be related to other changes in infrastructure or public good provision at the local level, or to pre-existing trends in entrepreneurship.

Keywords: access to justice; courts; entrepreneurship; institutions; Brazil Jel Codes: K1; K41; K42; H41; O12; O17; O54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 39p
Date: 2011-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ent and nep-law
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (2)

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Related works:
Journal Article: Access to Justice and Entrepreneurship: Evidence from Brazil's Special Civil Tribunals (2014) Downloads
Working Paper: Access to Justice and Entrepreneurship: Evidence from Brazil's Special Civil Tribunals (2011) Downloads
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