Forms of Governance and the Size of Rent-Seeking Articles uri icon

publication date

  • February 2008

start page

  • 197

end page

  • 210


  • 2


  • 30

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0176-1714

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1432-217X


  • In this paper we present a model where agents can choose between productive and rent-seeking activities. We consider two governance institutions: autocracy and parliament rule. Under autocracy rent-seeking reflects the taste of the autocrat for such activities. Under parliament rule rent-seeking depends on parliament voting. We show that under parliament rule the size of rent-seeking may be larger than under autocracy. This cast doubts on the idea that "rigth" institutions necessarily promote good economic performance. We also show that rent-seekers may be interested in overthrowing autocracy.