How Does Democratization Impact Public Health Outcomes In Developing States?

Open Access
Bell, Carey Linwood
Area of Honors:
Communication Arts and Sciences
Bachelor of Arts
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Rachel Smith, Thesis Supervisor
  • Rachel Annette Smith, Thesis Supervisor
  • Lori Ann Bedell, Honors Advisor
  • democracy
  • public health
Although the relationship between democracy and development has been widely debated and has produced an abundant literature, few if any firm conclusions have been reached about how one impacts the other. This paper seeks to investigate whether democratization produces improved health outcomes in developing states. Examining a broad range of countries across multiple years, this paper finds little correlation between levels of democracy and levels of public health. In fact, some of the strongest evidence points to the possibility that in some ways, democratization may have a negative health impact. This paper discusses the preceding literature surrounding the topic, methods and results, and potential explanations.