Africa & Development
Research insight
January 4, 2021

Does Information Break the Political Resource Curse? Experimental Evidence from Mozambique

Mozambique discovered substantial natural resources in recent years. Known gas reserves in the Rovuma basin have the potential to transform Mozambique into a global player in Liquefied Natural Gas exports. Being a recent democracy, and with relatively weak institutions, Mozambique also faces considerable risks of resource and revenue mismanagement in the future, particularly since media independence and penetration are low, and the level of political accountability is not improving.

This research project will evaluate the distribution of information about the management of the newly discovered natural gas in the Rovuma basin, and the holding of citizen meetings to deliberate on the main priorities for spending the revenues from these resources. Through the widespread provision of information about the management of natural resources in the country the resource curse can possibly be counteracted.

Researchers: Alex Armand, Alexander Coutts, Pedro Vicente and Inês Vilela

This working paper has been accepted for publication in the American Economic Review.

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NOVAFRICA is a knowledge center created by the Nova School of Business and Economics of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa in 2011. Its mission is to produce expertise with an impact on business and economic development in Africa. A particular focus is on Portuguese-speaking Africa, i.e., Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, and Sao Tome and Principe.

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