Foreign Aid, Democracy and Political Stability in Post Conflict Societies
Marijke Breuning* and John Ishiyama**
What is the relationship between development aid and political stability in post conflict societies?
Although there has been a considerable amount of literature that empirically investigates the
relationship between development aid and corruption (Tavares. 2003; Alessina and Weder, 2002;
Knack, 2000; Rimmer, 2000; Svensson 1998; Ijaz, 1996), the quality of governance (Knack
2001) ethnic conflict (Esman and Herring, 2003; Herring, 2001) and post conflict economic
growth (Collier and Hoeffler, 2004; 2002; Hamburg, 2002; Casella and Eichengreen, 1994) no
study of which we are aware has examined the direct effects of both the quantity and timing of
development aid on promoting political stability in post conflict societies.
In this study we examine twenty-six post conflict countries across whose civil wars ended
after 1980: Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Burundi,
Chad, Croatia, The Democratic Republic of
the Congo, Republic of Congo,
El Salvador, Ethiopia,
Georgia, Guatemala, Indonesia, Iran,
Morocco, Mozambique, Nicaragua,
Nigeria, Peru, Philippines,
Russia, Rwanda, Serbia and
Montenegro, Somalia, Tajikistan and Uganda.
The dependent variable is measured using
Kauffman et al’s (2003) measure of political stability for 1996-2002. The principal independent
variables are the amount of aid provided in the periods following the conflict settlement, the
timing of aid as well as domestic political factors (such as the extent to which democracy has
taken root) and ethnolinguistic homogeneity/heterogeneity.
Several scholars have examined the impact of aid on post conflict societies. Many argue
that there is good reason to believe that post conflict development aid may help promote political
stability. As Hamburg (2001) notes the provision of massive aid will help populations to secure