This Independent Study examines the relationship of democratic institutions and sound domestic policy implementation on the economic growth in developing resource dependent countries. Developing countries that have natural resource abundance are given an economic sector that should allow them a step up on other developing countries. However, history has proven that countries that have natural resource abundance tend to do worse off economically, this has been commonly called the "resource curse". This study attempts to solve the puzzle of the "resource curse" and find the root of the problem. Critiques on the resource curse suggest multiple cures for the curse including sound domestic policies. Given that the resource curse still exists, do democratic institutions encourage the implementation of sound domestic policies leading to economic growth? Democratic institutions provide checks and balance and transparency for countries that have natural resources, this provides an opportunity for countries to implement sound domestic policies in order to ensure prudent fiscal policies to allocate resource rents responsibly. This study implements a comparative case study, examining the cases of Nigeria and Botswana. Nigeria demonstrates a case that has low levels of democratic institutions, and Botswana demonstrates a case that has higher levels of democratic institutions.


N’Diaye, Boubacar


International Relations


Comparative Politics | Political Economy


resource curse

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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