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The determinants of aid allocation by regional multilateral development banks and United Nations agencies

Neumayer, Eric ORCID: 0000-0003-2719-7563 (2003) The determinants of aid allocation by regional multilateral development banks and United Nations agencies. International Studies Quarterly, 47 (1). pp. 101-122. ISSN 1468-2478

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Identification Number: 10.1111/1468-2478.4701005


This paper examines which factors can explain the allocation of aid by four regional development banks as well as three United Nations agencies. The results suggest the following: Most donors examined also exhibit a bias apparent in bilateral aid allocation in favor of less populous countries. Some of them also share another bias of bilateral donors who give more aid to their former colonies. However, the three United Nations agencies contravene a third bias of bilateral aid allocation and provide more aid to countries geographically more distant from the centers of the Western world. While the regional development banks with the possible exception of the Inter-American one focus exclusively on economic need as measured by per capita income, the three United Nations agencies also take into account human development need in their aid allocation as measured by the Physical Quality of Life Index. Some tentative evidence is found that respect for political freedom is rewarded with higher aid receipts at the aggregate multilateral level and by the Inter-American Development Bank as well as perhaps, in a few estimations, by two of the three United Nations agencies. Neither respect for personal integrity rights nor low levels of perceived corruption play any role in the allocation of aid by the donors looked at. In general, higher military expenditures and arms imports are not associated with higher aid receipts, with a few notable exceptions.

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Additional Information: This is an electronic version of an Article published in International studies quarterly 47(1) pp. 101-122 © 2003 Blackwell Publishing. The definitive version is available at LSE has developed LSE Research Online so that users may access research output of the School. Copyright and Moral Rights for the papers on this site are retained by the individual authors and/or other copyright owners. Users may download and/or print one copy of any article(s) in LSE Research Online to facilitate their private study or for non-commercial research. You may not engage in further distribution of the material or use it for any profit-making activities or any commercial gain. You may freely distribute the URL (<>) of the LSE Research Online website.
Divisions: LSE
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Date Deposited: 23 May 2006
Last Modified: 19 May 2024 17:30

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