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No 104

Aid Effectiveness: Human Rights as a Conditionality Measure

  • Abstract

    The ‘aid conditionality’ hypothesis as advocated in the literature suggests that aid is effective in augmenting growth only in the presence of a sound policy environment. This hypothesis was so influential that its policy recommendation, to provide aid conditional upon recipient domestic policies, is currently the dominant ODA allocation criterion. However non-economic dimensions of development (political and institutional) are increasingly seen as fundamental. For this reason, this paper focuses on the linkage between aid and a noneconomic factor like Human Rights (reflecting repression and corruption) as a measure of aid effectiveness, in explaining growth outcomes across 42 Least Developed economies. We find that countries with better human rights experience positive growth from aid receipts, signifying the role of strong institutions and good governance in enabling more effective use of aid. The paper thus concludes that the measurement and monitoring of human rights provision is a useful tool in gauging the likely effectiveness of foreign aid.

    Keywords: Human rights, aid effectiveness, corruption, oligarchy.
    JEL Classification: F35, P16, P40, O19.

    The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the Bank of Lithuania.