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July 1, 2009

Exporting Knowledge Through Technical Assistance and Capacity Building

Posted by D. Daniel Sokol

I have a new working paper with Kyle Steigert (Wisconsin Agriculture and Applied Economics) titled Exporting Knowledge Through Technical Assistance and Capacity Building.  You can download it on SSRN.

ABSTRACT: With a significant increase in the number of countries with antitrust laws, technical assistance to improve the capacity of antitrust agencies has become a key priority for international antitrust aid efforts. Donors have assigned a significant amount of time and financial resources to technical assistance to raise the capacity and effectiveness of younger agencies. However, quantitative analysis of the impact of this technical assistance remains limited at best. In this article we focus on what appears to be a particularly important part of technical assistance and capacity building—the use of long term advisors (LTA) and short term interventions (STI).

In a year-long project, the International Competition Network surveyed its member antitrust agencies on antitrust technical assistance. The questionnaire contained over 1,000 questions on various aspects of technical assistance. We provide an analysis of the data using formal modeling. The most important findings from the model relate to two structural features of recipient antitrust agencies. First, recipient agencies absorb LTA and STI services best when the agency head has a rank of minister or higher and/or when agencies had prosecutorial discretion. At the heart of these agency features is the relative power position of the agency in the domestic political and economic structure of the country. Those agencies with a strong power base seem well positioned to receive the current formatted technical assistance involving LTAs and STIs. Second, bilateral donor relationships did remarkably better in helping the agencies with their strategic mission.

July 1, 2009 | Permalink


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