NATO as an External Driver of Institutional Change in Post-Communist Countries
So far, economic analyses of NATO enlargement have been restricted to aspects of regional security while political analyses focused on indirect peace-building effects on democracy in the first place. Our panel regressions for 25 post-communist countries for the period from 1996 to 2008 reveal that direct incentives provided by NATO pre-accession are important for broad-based institutional development. Results are even more robust than for variables measuring EU pre-accession or NATO membership effects. This supports the argument that NATO can act as a transformative power and should strengthen its political agenda.