The Primacy of Institutions Reconsidered: The Effects of Malaria Prevalence in the Empirics of Development


  • Carstensen
  • K.
  • Gundlach
  • E.

Some recent empirical studies deny any direct performance effects of measures of geography

and conclude that institutions trump all other potential determinants of development. For

given effects of institutional quality, our empirical results indicate quantitatively important

direct negative performance effects of a measure of disease ecology, namely malaria

prevalence. This finding appears to be robust to using alternative specifications,

instrumentations, and samples. We conclude from our estimates that implementing good

institutions appears to be necessary but not sufficient to generate a persistent process of

successful economic development.


JEL Classification
O1, O4


  • Wirtschaftsentwicklung