On the Mechanics of the Resource Curse: Experimental Evidence from Mozambique
Mozambique discovered substantial natural resources in recent years. Being a recent democracy, and with relatively weak institutions, Mozambique faces considerable risks of resource mismanagement in the future. We designed and implemented a large-scale field experiment to follow the dissemination of information about the newly discovered natural gas in the Rovuma basin (Cabo Delgado Province). In this context, we test known theories of the natural resource curse at the level of citizens and local leaders. We designed three treatments, one with information for local leaders, one with information to both citizens and local leaders, and one that adds citizen deliberation activities to information. We measure a variety of outcomes through surveys, behavioral activities, and lab games.
Pedro Vicente (PhD, University of Chicago), a 2017–18 Kellogg Visiting Fellow, is associate professor of economics at Portugal’s Nova School of Business and Economics, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, where he is also the founding scientific director of NOVAFRICA (Nova Africa Center for Business and Economic Development)...