Rosnel Sessinou, Julieta Peveri
Océane Piétri: oceane.pietri[at]univ-amu.fr
Morgan Raux: morgan.raux[at]univ-amu.fr
Laura Sénécal: laura.senecal[at]univ-amu.fr
Assessing the impact of political leaders on economic growth
I analyze if changes of national leaders can account, at least partially, for the observed high variability of economic growth and I assess which individual characteristics are linked to their performance. I focus on a selected set of political transitions in which the identity of the ruler is not likely to be dependent on the economic conditions (transitions generated by a leader's death, a term limit constraint, a royal succession, a close election or a constitutional order). I find evidence that political rulers have an influence on economic growth. The strength of their impact is conditioned by the level of development, the degree of democracy and the possibility of reelection. Regarding leaders' performance, I find robust evidence that younger leaders and the ones with more experience in politics are associated with a better economic performance. The career background is also significant for establishing the leader's quality.