The Role of Geography in Shaping Governance Performance

Publication | December 2020

This paper demonstrates that good governance in one country can influence governance improvements in neighboring countries and highlights that regional political and economic cooperation can benefit institutional development across borders.

Governance has a spatial dimension due to spillovers and resource flows across juridical boundaries. This paper finds that governance in a given country—manifested most clearly through voice and accountability—exhibits a positive relationship with those in neighboring countries. Feedback mechanisms are traced in that any change in the income level of a country can affect its governance performance and also impact the governance scores of neighboring countries. This phenomenon is observed in the "Arab Spring," "Me Too," and "Black Lives Matter" cross-border movements


  • Introduction
  • Spatial Considerations on Governance
  • Measures of Spatial Autocorrelation
  • Defining Variables and Data Requirements
  • Results of Spatial Analysis
  • Conclusions

Additional Details

  • Governance and public sector management
  • Institutional systems and political economy
  • Institutional development
  • Law
  • Anticorruption
  • 30
  • 8.5 x 11
  • WPS200378

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