Isaac Mirti

Student NameIsaac Mirti
Faculty Mentor NameMark Rush
CollegeCollege of Liberal Arts and Sciences
MajorStatistics and Economics
MinorAfrican Studies (Arabic Language and Linguistics Track)
Research InterestsEconomic Development, Applied Statistics, Applied Modelling
Academic AwardsDeans’ List (2017 – 2020), Wallace-Carver Fellowship (2017), Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship (FLAS) for Arabic (2019/20 Academic Year), University Scholars Program (2020)
OrganizationsHonors Ambassadors (Luminaries)
Hobbies and InterestsTraveling, farming, cooking, soccer

Research Project

Differential Impact on Economic Development: An Analysis of Colonial Legacy on Sub-Saharan Africa?

There is substantial literature in development economics suggesting that a nation’s colonial history plays an integral part in pre-determining who is rich, and who is poor. Much of the literature surrounding this notion refers to the work of Acemoglu, Johnson, and Robinson who theorize in their paper “The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation” that colonies established as settler colonies tended to inherit institutions conducive to economic growth, and vice versa for extractive colonies. When these colonies became independent nations, much of the legal systems, style of governance and institutions were either inherited or modeled after those of their colonial ruler. Furthermore, who you were colonized by also impacted what was inherited after independence. Previous studies suggest that among former African colonies, British or French colonies experienced marginally faster growth rates than Portuguese, Belgian, or Italian ones. This provides additional insight to suggest that differentiation in economic growth could be explained by a nation’s colonial history. My research project attempts to improve the understanding of the differential impacts of British and French colonialism in sub-Saharan Africa utilizing econometric models that account for institutional quality, and pre and postcolonial experiences.