Carnegie, Allison and Nikolay Marinov. 2017. "Foreign Aid, Human Rights and Democracy Promotion: Evidence from a Natural Experiment"
Does foreign aid improve human rights and democracy? We help arbitrate the debate over this question by leveraging a novel source of exogeneity: the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union. We find that when a country’s former colonizer holds the presidency of the Council of the European Union during the budget-making process, the country is allocated considerably more foreign aid than are countries whose former colonizer does not hold the presidency.