We analyze the influence of IMF and World Bank programs on political regime transitions. We develop an extended version of Acemoglu and Robinson's [American Economic Review 91, 2001] model of political transitions to show how the anticipation of new loans from in-ternational financial institutions can trigger political transitions which would not otherwise have taken place. We test this unexplored implication of the theory empirically. We find in a world sample from 1970 to 2002 that the anticipation of receiving new programs immediately after a political regime transition increases the probability of a transition from autocracy to democracy and reduces the probability of democratic survival.
political transitions democracy autocracy IMF World Bank