GRM 2010 GRM 2011

Abstract Details

 
AUTHOR NAME
 
Family Name:
Krane
 
First Name:
Jim
 
ABSTRACT OF PAPER
 
Title of Paper:
Alternate Visions of the Rentier Social Contract: Policymaking Rigidity versus Citizen Flexibility
 
Paper Proposal Text :
Do citizens of autocracies need to receive free energy to persuade them to support their governments? The answer depends on whether you ask elites or the citizens themselves. A public survey in the six Persian Gulf monarchies reveals levels of public entitlement to energy subsidies that are lower than those predicted by rentier theory. This suggests the public is more amenable to subsidy reform, which happens to be a policy priority in most of these countries, given the rapid growth in domestic consumption and resource depletion. By contrast, elites surveyed separately overestimate public opposition to reform of social contract entitlements. Contrary to expectations of rentier theory, citizens exhibiting the highest level of entitlement over national resource wealth are those most willing to accept higher prices. Overall, interviews and surveys of policymakers and other regional elites reveal notions of “rigid” social contracts consistent with rentier theory, while a majority of the public demonstrates a more flexible interpretation. Regimes may therefore have more scope to reform resource overconsumption than commonly understood, with the important caveat that a substantial minority of the public remained opposed to higher energy prices under all survey conditions.
 
 
 

WITH THE GENEROUS SUPPORT OF