Professor of Economics; Hans Hufschmid Chair in Management
Better understanding the sources of the wealth of nations is an age-old endeavor and Romain Wacziarg seeks to understand what explains economic performance. He has studied how deeply rooted features of societies affect their economic performance today, taking into account the historical legacy of geography, ethnic divisions resulting from complex historical paths and the cultural traits inherited from ancestors. A major theme of his research is the causes and effects of the global spread of democracy over the last few decades. Is democracy a luxury good that only wealthy countries can afford, or does democracy promote prosperity?
In a model, cultural differences matter as much as geography, institutional distinctions or capital constraints
Gauging Trump's appeal by estimating an area's social capital
Using parish records, researchers examine fundamental changes in society following the French Revolution
The narrative of a growing cultural divide, while partly true, conceals a more nuanced picture