Minding Weber more than ever ? The impacts of state sapacity and bureaucratic autonomy on development

Luciana Cingolani*, Kaj Thomsson, Denis de Crombrugghe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


State capacity has attracted renewed interest over the last years, notably in the study of violent conflict. Yet, this concept is conceived differently depending on where the interest lies. In this article, we focus on bureaucratic autonomy as a distinct concept and discuss its connection to state capacity in detail. Using panel data over 1990–2010 and a novel indicator of autonomy, we estimate the separate effect of state capacity and bureaucratic autonomy on child mortality and tuberculosis prevalence. The evidence suggests that bureaucratic autonomy has a stronger impact than commonly used measures of state capacity or traditional macroeconomic variables.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-207
JournalWorld Development
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Cite this