- The Oxford Handbook of the Politics of Development
- List of Contributors
- Modernization Theory: Does Economic Development Cause Democratization?
- Dependency Theory
- Political Development
- The Washington Consensus and the New Political Economy of Economic Reform
- Penury Traps and Prosperity Tales: Why Some Countries Escape Poverty While Others Do Not
- Culture, Politics, and Development
- Religion, Politics, and Economic Development: Synergies and Disconnects
- Does Inequality Harm Economic Development and Democracy?: Accounting for Missing Values, Noncomparable Observations, and Endogeneity
- Ethnicity and Development
- Civil Conflict and Development
- The Politics of the Resource Curse: A Review
- Taxation and Development
- How Do Governments Build Capabilities to Do Great Things?: Ten Cases, Two Competing Explanations, One Large Research Agenda
- Leadership and the Politics of Development
- Colonialism and Development in Africa
- Investment and Debt
- The Role of the State in Harnessing Trade-and-Investment for Development Purposes
- International Financial Institutions and Market Liberalization in the Developing World
- Foreign Aid and Democratization in Developing Countries
- Organizing for Prosperity: Collective Action, Political Parties, and the Political Economy of Development
- Missing Links in the Institutional Chain
- The Comparative Politics of Service Delivery in Developing Countries
- Party Systems and the Politics of Development
- Populism and Political Representation
- Africa’s Political Economy in the Contemporary Era
- The Politics of Development in Latin America and East Asia
- Development and Underdevelopment in the Middle East and North Africa
- Rethinking the Institutional Foundations of China’s Hypergrowth: Official Incentives, Institutional Constraints, and Local Developmentalism
- The Political Economy of Growth and Development in India: Two Puzzles
- The Politics of Growth in South Korea: Miracle, Crisis, and the New Market Economy
Abstract and Keywords
In this article, we evaluate the impact of colonialism on development in sub-Saharan Africa. In the world context, colonialism had very heterogeneous effects, operating through many mechanisms—sometimes encouraging development, sometimes retarding it. In the African case, however, this heterogeneity is muted, making an assessment of the average effect more interesting. To draw conclusions, it is necessary to know not just what actually happened to development during the colonial period but also what might have happened without colonialism and its legacy. In light of plausible counterfactuals, colonialism probably had a uniformly negative effect on development in Africa. To develop this claim, we distinguish between three sorts of colonies, each with a distinct performance within the cultural period, different counterfactuals, and varied legacies.
Leander Heldring Harvard University
James A. Robinson Professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy.
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