A theory of informational autocracy

@article{Guriev2020ATO,
  title={A theory of informational autocracy},
  author={Sergei Guriev and Daniel Treisman},
  journal={Journal of Public Economics},
  year={2020}
}
Abstract We develop an informational theory of autocracy. Dictators survive not by means of force or ideology but because they convince the public—rightly or wrongly—that they are competent. Citizens do not observe the leader's type but infer it from signals in their living standards, state propaganda, and messages sent by an informed elite via independent media. If citizens conclude that the leader is incompetent, they overthrow him. The dictator can invest in making convincing state… 

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