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State Capacity and the Rise of the Modern Nation State with Mark Koyama

State Capacity and the Rise of the Modern Nation State with Mark Koyama

My guest for this episode is Mark Koyama of George Mason University. Our topic is a recent paper titled, "States and Economic Growth: Capacity and Constraints," which Mark coauthored with Noel Johnson. Just recorded at great podcast with @GarrettPetersen on my work on state capacity (with @ndjohnson). — Mark Koyama (@MarkKoyama) May 24, 2017 As stated in the paper, "state capacity describes the ability of a state to collect taxes, enforce law and order, and provide public goods." That said, state capacity does not mean big government. A state may have the power to impose rules across its territory, but it doesn't have to use that power in a tyrannical way. Another way of saying that is to say that having a high state capacity is compatible with Adam Smith's desire for "peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice." One metric that researchers use to measure state capacity is tax revenue per capita. But as Mark is careful to point out, a state with less state capacity c

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