Individualism and Growth

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This comes from Yuriy Gorodnichenko and Gérard Roland, who find a correlation between how individualistic a country’s residents are and that country’s long-term economic growth. After some additional testing, they also claim there’s a causal relationship:

We find a strong causal effect of individualism on income per worker, total factor productivity, and innovation as predicted by our theory. These results hold even when we exclude the Americas and Oceania where settler colonization played an important role. They also hold when controlling for measures of geographic distance, human capital, ethnic fractionalization, and other factors affecting growth….Moreover, even after controlling for measures of institutions which were previously found (e.g., Hall and Jones, 1999, Acemoglu et al., 2001) to affect long-run growth, culture continues to play a statistically significant and quantitatively important role, implying that culture has an effect on economic development that is independent of institutions.

Summary here. I’d be interested in seeing a statistical critique of this result. (Via Free Exchange.)

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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