Working Papers, University of California, Department of Economics 13-3
This paper evaluates the impact of major natural resource discoveries since 1950 on GDP per capita and other economic and social indicators. Using panel fixed-effects estimation ad resource discoveries in countries that were not previously resource-rich, I find a positive effect on GDP per capita following extraction that persists in the long term, in contrast with much of the resource curse literature that uses cross-sectional designs. I also find positive effects on education levels, reductions in infant mortality, and negative effects on democratic institutions. I further test these outcomes with synthetic control analysis, yielding results consistent the fixed-effects model.