Government ownership of IMF conditionality programs: conceptualization, measurement, and validation

Konstantinidis, N. and Reinsberg, B. (2023) Government ownership of IMF conditionality programs: conceptualization, measurement, and validation. International Studies Quarterly, 67(4), sqad074. (doi: 10.1093/isq/sqad074)

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The shifting emphasis on performance evaluation and accountability in the context of financial lending or foreign-aid arrangements sponsored by international organizations (IOs) has brought to the fore the question of government ownership of reforms. While the concept of ownership has featured highly in academic and policy debates over the effects of IO conditionality, it arguably remains theoretically elusive, ill-identified, and under-specified. In this article, we focus on International Monetary Fund (IMF) programs and define government ownership with respect to the counterfactual level of de jure structural reforms that would be achieved in the absence of IMF conditionality. We then use the synthetic control method to identify continuous levels of ownership as a function of a treatment effect on treated compliers and operationalize the concept of ownership over external- and financial-sector conditionality across a restricted sample of uninterrupted IMF arrangements (1980–2014). Furthermore, we probe the criterion and construct validity of our measure with respect to known determinants, proxies, and outcomes of ownership. We argue that ours is a reliable, replicable, valid, robust, and systematic measure of ownership that can help better identify and estimate the indirect relationship between program design and policy implementation.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:NK acknowledges the financial support of the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competition for the project titled “Counter-Productive Incentives Schemes in European and International Politics” (CSO2015-70072-P).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Reinsberg, Dr Bernhard
Authors: Konstantinidis, N., and Reinsberg, B.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:International Studies Quarterly
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN (Online):1468-2478
Published Online:28 September 2023
Copyright Holders:Copyright © The Author(s) (2023)
First Published:First published in International Studies Quarterly 67(4):sqad074
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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