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  • 1
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    Washington, DC: Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department
    Publication Date: 2019-01-24
    Description: While economists have tended to focus on specific public policies when developing recommendations, the achievement of welfare objectives might depend more on the quality of policies than their content. This paper develops several measures of the qualities of policies across countries, arguing that the quality of public policies depends on each polity's ability to strike intertemporal transactions necessary to develop and sustain effective policies. The analytical framework developed here indicates that this ability depends on several characteristics of political institutions, such as congressional capabilities, judicial independence, and bureaucratic independence and professionalism. The empirical evidence presented supports this idea. The measures of policy quality developed here could be utilized for other purposes, including the determination of conditions under which more public spending in a given area is likely to generate the desired outcomes.
    Keywords: D72 ; D78 ; H10 ; H50 ; O10 ; ddc:330 ; Political institutions ; Public policies ; Government capabilities ; Intertemporal cooperation ; Development ; Policy index ; Credibility ; Judicial independence ; Party institutionalization ; Congress capabilities ; Cabinet stability
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 2
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    Washington, DC: Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department
    Publication Date: 2019-01-24
    Description: This paper introduces preliminary evidence from a cross-country database of policy characteristics and potential uses of that database. While most databases have emphasized either the content of policies (e.g., size of government deficits) or countries' formal institutions (e.g., political regime, electoral system), the variables in this database reflect the policymaking capabilities of different polities. The paper attempts to explain these policy characteristics as depending on the workings of political institutions, using a logic emphasizing intertemporal political compromise. The paper also contrasts this logic with alternatives such as the veto players approach. The paper concludes by suggesting the use of these policy characteristics or state capabilities as explanatory variables for the effectiveness of public spending in various social areas.
    Keywords: D72 ; D78 ; H10 ; H50 ; O10 ; ddc:330 ; Political institutions ; Public policies ; Government capabilities ; Veto players ; Intertemporal cooperation ; Development ; Human Development Index ; Public expenditures ; Policy index ; Adaptability ; Stability ; Judicial independence ; Party institutionalization ; Congress capabilities ; Cabinet stability ; Database
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
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  • 3
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    Washington, DC: Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
    Publication Date: 2015-02-17
    Description: This paper surveys selected themes in the political economy of policymaking in Latin America, with an emphasis on recent research focusing on actual decision and implementation processes, and on the political institutions and state and social actors involved in those processes. In particular, the paper addresses how political rules work for or against intertemporal cooperation among political actors. The document shows that the extent to which polities obtain the key policy features that seem to determine development depends on the workings of political institutions, which define how the policymaking game is played, on the characteristics of the arenas of interaction, which define where the policymaking game is played, and on certain characteristics of key socioeconomic groups, which define who interacts with professionalpoliticians in pursuing different policy preferences.
    Keywords: D72 ; D78 ; H10 ; H50 ; O10 ; ddc:330 ; Political institutions ; Public policies ; Economic policy ; Government capabilities ; Development ; Latin America
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2015-02-17
    Description: The capacity to sustain policies over time and the capacity to adjust policies in the face of changing circumstances are two desirable properties of policymaking systems. The veto player approach has suggested that polities with more veto players will have the capacity to sustain policies at the expense of the ability to change policy when necessary. This paper disputes that assertion from an intertemporal perspective, drawing from transaction cost economics and repeated game theory and showing that some countries might have both more credibility and more adaptability than others. More generally, the paper argues that, when studying the effects of political institutions on policy outcomes, a perspective of intertemporal politics might lead to predictions different from those emanating from more a-temporal approaches.
    Keywords: D72 ; D78 ; H10 ; H50 ; ddc:330 ; Political institutions ; Public policies ; Veto players ; Policy adaptability ; Policy stability ; Intertemporal ; Credibility ; Repeated games
    Repository Name: EconStor: OA server of the German National Library of Economics - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: English
    Type: doc-type:workingPaper
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