The World Bank has been increasingly involved in reforming Latin America's education systems. However, compliance with World Bank directives varies greatly. Recent scholarship has made significant progress in fashioning an explanation for this variation by focusing on the presence of democracy. This article takes the literature a step further by identifying the mechanism by which democracy matters. Specifically, variations in executive authority are key factors in explaining the adoption of controversial World Bank directives. The authors argue that a government's ability to implement World Bank reforms and overcome popular dissent, if present, is a function of executive authority. They examine executive authority using several measures to test their hypotheses on a 20-year panel of 17 American states from 1980 to 2000. Results indicate that newly democratized governments and strong executives are indeed more successful in passing World Bank reforms.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science