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Development Economics Paper
Does Social Insurance Help Secure Property Rights?
Robert MacCulloch
September 2001
Paper No' DEDPS 31:
Full Paper (pdf)

Tags: social insrance; property rights; revolt.

This paper develops a simple model to show how social insurance affects the desire to revolt against property rights. It then tests for the effect of social insurance on revolt by introducing a panel data set derived from surveys across 200,000 randomly sampled individuals from the 1970s to the 1990s. After controlling for the personal characteristics of respondents, country fixed effects, year dummies, as well as country-specific time trends, fewer people are found to support revolt when the generosity of either the elderly person's social security or unemployment benefits increases. A one standard deviation change in either variable explains approximately one standard deviation of the proportion of people supporting revolt, measured across the countries and years in the sample. The personal characteristic with the largest effect on reducing revolutionary support is being religious.