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Berggren, N., Bjørnskov, C. (2012). Does Religiosity Promote Property Rights and the Rule of Law? University of Aarhus in its series Economics Working Paper 2012-08

Social and cultural determinants of economic institutions and outcomes have come to the forefront of economic research. We introduce religiosity, measured as the share for which religion is important in daily life, to explain institutional quality in the form of property rights and the rule of law. Previous studies have only measured the impact of membership shares of different religions, with mixed results. We find, in a cross-country regression analysis comprising up to 112 countries, that religiosity is negatively related to our institutional outcome variables. This only holds in democracies (not autocracies), which suggests that religiosity affects the way institutions work through the political process. Individual religions are not related to our measure of institutional quality.

Authors

Berggren, Niclas

Bjørnskov, Christian

Christian Bjørnskov is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Business of the Aarhus University, where he teaches International Economics. His main research interests are Social capital, International trade and Development Economics. Official Site

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