Measuring institutional quality in ancient Athens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We use the Economic Freedom Index to characterize the institutions of the Athenian city-state in the fourth century BCE. It has been shown that ancient Greece witnessed improved living conditions for an extended period of time. Athens in the fourth century appears to have fared particularly well. We find that economic freedom in ancient Athens is on level with the highest ranked modern economies such as Hong Kong and Singapore. With the exception of the position of women and slaves, Athens scores high in almost every dimension of economic freedom. Trade is probably highly important even by current standards. As studies of contemporary societies suggest that institutional quality is probably an important determinant of economic growth, it may also have been one factor in the relative material success of the Athenians.

Details

Authors
Organisations
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Economics
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-310
JournalJournal of Institutional Economics
Volume10
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes

Total downloads

No data available