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Military Expenditures, Inequality, and Welfare and Political Regimes: A Dynamic Panel Data Analysis

Unal Tongur and Adem Yavuz Elveren

The goal of this paper is to investigate the relationship between type of welfare regimes and military expenditures. There is a sizeable empirical literature on the development of the welfare state and on the typology of the welfare regimes. There appear to be, however, no empirical studies that examine welfare regimes with special attention to military spending. This study aims at providing a comprehensive analysis on the topic by considering several different welfare regime typologies. To do so, we use dynamic panel data analysis for 37 countries for the period of 1988-2003 by considering a wide range of control variables such as type of political regimes, inequality measures, number of terrorist events, and size of the armed forces. Our findings, in line with the literature, show that there is a positive relationship between income inequality and share of military expenditures in the central government budget, and that the number of terrorist events is a significant factor that affects both the level of military expenditure and inequality. Also, the paper reveals a significant negative relationship between social democratic welfare regimes and military expenditures.

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