The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper attempts to identify robust patterns of cross-country growth behavior in the world as a whole and Africa. It employs a novel methodology that incorporates a dynamic panel estimator, and Bayesian Model Averaging to explicitly account for model uncertainty. The findings indicate that: (i) in addition to initial conditions, various economic factors such as higher investment, lower inflation, lower government consumption, better fiscal stance, improved political environment, exogenous terms-of-trade shocks, and fixed geographical factors are robustly correlated with growth; (ii) what is good for growth around the world is, in principle, also good for growth in Africa; and (iii) political and institutional variables are particularly important in explaining African growth.