Cohesive Institutions and the Distribution of Political Rents: Theory and Evidence

  • Timothy Besley
  • Hannes Mueller
Part of the International Economic Association Series book series (IEA)


This paper considers how public resources are distributed across groups and how this depends on the institutional environment. It shows how executive constraints and openness should matter to this and argues that a key role for institutions is to protect politically excluded groups. It develops an approach to judging political institutions based on the idea that cohesive institutions play a role when there is uncertainty about the allocation of political power. Using spatial data on night light, it shows inequality is lower with executive constraints. In addition, politically excluded groups do better within countries when such constraints are in force.


Political rents Executive constraints Inclusive politics 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.LSELondonUK
  2. 2.CIFARTorontoCanada
  3. 3.IAE (CSIC)BarcelonaSpain
  4. 4.MOVEBarcelonaSpain
  5. 5.GSEBarcelonaSpain

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