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This paper discusses the link between political accountability, regarded as an important aspect of institutional design, and infrastructure regulation that has been emphasized in the recent literature on the role of institutions in economic development. The authors report on the findings and lessons drawn from an analysis of telecommunications data covering the period 1985-1999 on two sets of countries; one composed of 29 developing countries and another of 23 developed countries. The main point highlighted by the analysis is that infrastructure regulation in a given country cannot be independent of the institutional environment, in particular, the degree of political accountability that supports the country's institutions.
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