Why Is the Accumulation of Knowledge So Hard? Exploring Econometric Research on the Determinants of Public Social Spending in Latin America

Svenja Flechtner, Diego Sánchez-Ancochea
2022 Latin American Research Review  
AbstractMany areas in applied econometric research within political economy fail to come up with conclusive findings. This is the case, for example, with studies on the determinants of public social spending in Latin America, a key area of research given the impact of social programs on poverty, inequality, and welfare more generally. In this area, as in others, it is hard to identify clear answers regarding the impact of economic processes and political institutions. Two reasons explain this
more » ... ck of knowledge accumulation. First, each study uses different data sources and analytical models. Second, some of the empirical strategies required to solve various econometric problems may affect the results. This article questions the role of econometric research as the only method to explore political economy questions and highlights the importance of promoting conversations between complementary methods of both quantitative and qualitative traditions.
doi:10.1017/lar.2022.21 fatcat:nomovg5zpncqtckjlt35zxhley