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The spread of empire: clio and the measurement of colonial borrowing costs

Accominotti, Olivier, Flandreau, Marc and Rezzik, Riad (2011) The spread of empire: clio and the measurement of colonial borrowing costs. Economic History Review, 64 (2). pp. 385-407. ISSN 0013-0117

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Identification Number: 10.1111/j.1468-0289.2010.00536.x


Modern cliometric studies use dummy variables to measure the effects of institutions. The dummy variable approach can be misleading, as illustrated by recent research on the impact of colonial rule on borrowing terms. We show how trying to measure a ‘colonial effect’ without an analysis of the financial consequences of political subjection can be misleading. The main effect of the British Empire was to remove the default risk. Establishing how this was done, and with what effects, should take us closer to a proper understanding of the effect of empire.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2010 Economic History Society
Divisions: Economic History
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
J Political Science > JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration
JEL classification: N - Economic History > N1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Growth and Fluctuations > N10 - General, International, or Comparative
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2011 08:57
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 00:44

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