Recent Articles

Read more about our latest published articles.

Review’s Archive

Corresponding Author:
Oluwole Owoye, Department of Social Sciences, Western Connecticut State University, Danbury, Connecticut, USA

Corresponding Coauthors:
Olugbenga A. Onafowora, Department of Economics, Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA

Assessing the Socio-Economic and Political Outcomes of the Arab Spring in Arab League Countries

(pp. 363-390)
JEL classification: F50; F55; P47; P51; P52; R58
Keywords: Arab Spring; Arab League; Uprisings and Protests; Worldwide Governance Indicators

Abstract

This paper uses the difference-in-means statistical approach to assess the socio-economic and political outcomes of the Arab Spring uprisings in 16 countries in the Arab League that experienced the region-wide protests. The main research question is: Did the Arab Spring uprisings and protests achieve the desired socio-economic and political outcomes? To answer this question, we use six Worldwide Governance Indicators: voice and accountability, political stability and absence of violence, government effectiveness, regulatory quality, rule of law, and control of corruption to assess whether positive or negative changes occurred in 16 countries in the Arab League after the uprisings and protests. Our empirical results revealed that statistically significant minor improvements in governance indicators occurred in 11 cases: five in Iraq, three in Algeria, one each in Djibouti, Sudan, and Tunisia. In contrast, we found that statistically significant negative changes occurred in 58 cases in which the governance indicators worsened: six each in Kuwait, Libya, and Syria; five each in Bahrain and Yemen; four each in Egypt, Lebanon, Mauritania, Oman, Sudan, and Tunisia; three in Jordan; two in Djibouti; and one in Algeria. In addition, the governance indicators remained unchanged in 27 cases: six in Morocco; three each in Djibouti, and Jordan; two each in Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Mauritania, and Oman; and one each in Bahrain, Iraq, Sudan, Tunisia, and Yemen. Interpretatively, the Arab Spring uprisings and protests worsened the governance indicators in almost all countries in the sample, especially in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, and Yemen where the protests led to the ouster of their autocratic leaders. Intuitively, one can attribute the negative changes and outcomes to the ongoing governance structures in Arab League countries where uprisings and protests tend to produce leadership changes from the same pool of inept mediocre leaders. 


Read the full article

Download the article in PDF format to read and print.


Bibliography

Abushouk, A.I. (2016), “The Arab Spring: A Fourth Wave of Democratization?”, DOMES - Digest of Middle East Studies, 25(1), 52-69.

Ahmad, F. (2019), “Arab Uprising:  A Comparison of Political System Before and After Uprising in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya”, International Islamic University Malaysia.

Aissa, El Hassane (2012), “The Arab Spring: Causes, Consequences, and Implications”, Defense Technical Information Center, Strategy Research Project, <https://apps.dtic.mil/sti/pdfs/ ADA560779.pdf>. Retrieved on June 20, 2021.

Anbarani, Ata (2013), “Typology of Political Regimes in North Africa before Arab Spring Case Study of Egypt, Tunisia and Libya”, International Journal of Asian Social Science, 3(5), 1089-1096.

Anderson, L. (2011), “Demystifying the Arab Spring: Parsing the difference between Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya”, Foreign Affairs, 90(3), 2-7.

Ansani, A. and V. Daniele (2012), “About a Revolution: The Motivations of the Arab Spring”, International Journal of Development and Conflict, 2(3),

DOI: 10.1142/S2010269012500135.

Athey, S. and G.W. Imbens (2006), “Identification and Inference in Nonlinear Difference-in-Differences Models”, Econometrica, 74(2), 431-497.

Athey, S. and G.W. Imbens (2017), “The State of Applied Econometrics: Causality and Policy Evaluation”, Journal of Economic Perspectives, 31(2), 3-32.

Axford, B. (2011), “Talk About a Revolution: Social Media and the MENA Uprisings”, Globalizations, 8(5), 681-686.

Bertrand, M., E. Duflo and S. Mullainathan (2004), “How much Should we Trust Difference-in-Differences Estimates?”, The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 119(1), 249-275.

Blakemore, E. (2019), “What was the Arab Spring and How Did It Spread?” National Geographic, March 29, <https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/article/arab-spring-cause>, Retrieved on July 10, 2021.

Bruns, A., T. Highfield and J. Burgess (2013), “The Arab Spring and Social Media Audiences:  English and Arabic Twitter Users and Their Networks”, American Behavioral Scientist, 57(7), 871-898.

Conde, G. (2017), “On the Evolutions of the Arab Spring”, Regions and Cohesion, 7(2), 96-105.

Dalacoura, K. (2012), “The 2011 Uprisings in the Arab Middle East: Political Change and Geopolitical Implications”, International Affairs, 88(1), 63-79.

El Hamamsy, W. (2011), “BB=Blackberry or Big Brother:  Digital Media and the Egyptian Revolution,” Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 47(4), 454-466.

Farooq, S., S. Bukhari and M. Ahmed (2017), “Arab Spring and the Theory of Relative Deprivation”, International Journal of Business and Social Science, 8(1), 126-132.

Fuhrer, R. (2013), “The Arab Spring in North Africa: Key Comparative Factors and Actors”, Master Thesis

<https://stars.library.ucf.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=&httpsredir=1&article=3902&context=etd>,  Retrieved on June 22, 2021.

Gladwell, M. (2010), “Twitter, Facebook, and Social Activism: Small Change – Why the Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted”, The New Yorker Annals of Innovation, Retrieved from <http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/10/04/101004fa_fact_gladwell?printable=true#ixzz10vnpdC2p>, on July 12, 2021.

Gladwell, M. (2011), “Does Egypt Need Twitter?”, The New Yorker News Desk, February 2,  Retrieved from <http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2011/02/does-egypt-need-twitter.hmtl> on July 12, 2021.

Haseeb, K. El-Din (2012), “The Arab Spring Revisited”, Contemporary Arab Affairs, 5(2), 185-197.

Hussain, M.M. and P.N. Howard (2012), “Democracy’s Fourth Wave?  Information Technologies and the Fuzzy Causes of the Arab Spring”, SSRN Papers,  Available at: <https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2029711>.

Idris, I. (2016), “Analysis of the Arab Spring,” Applied Knowledge Services, Helpdesk Research Report, Retrieved on June 30, 2021 from <https://gsdrc.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/HDQ1350.pdf>.

Kazamias, A. (2011), “The ‘Anger Revolutions’ in the Middle East: An Answer to Decades of Failed Reform,” Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies, 13(2), 143-156.

Kolster, J. (2012), “Tunisia: Economic and Social Challenges Beyond the Revolution”, African Development Bank (AfDB) Group: Tunis.

Korotayev, A.V. and J.V. Zinkina (2011), “Egyptian Revolution:  A Demographic Structural Analysis”, Middle East Studies Online Journal, 5(2), 57-94.

Lechner, M. (2010), “The Estimation of Causal Effects by Difference-in-Difference Methods”, Foundations and Trends in Econometrics, 4(3), 165-224.

Lynch, M. (2013), “The Arab Uprising: The Unfinished Revolutions of the New Middle East,” 1st Edition, University of California Press: New York.

Matta, S., S. Appleton and M. Bleaney (2019), “The Impact of the Arab Spring on the Tunisian Economy”, The World Bank Economic Review, 33(1), 231-258.

Morozov, E. (2011), “Facebook and Twitter Are Just Places Revolutionaries Go”, The Guardian: Comment is Free, March 7, 2011. Retrieved on July 15, 2021 from <https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2011/mar/07/facebook-twitter-revolutionaries-cyber-utopians>.

Mujani, W. K. and S.N. Musa (2018), “Arab Spring: Review of Factors for People’s Uprising in Tunisia,” International Journal of Civil Engineering and Technology, 9(3), 558-565.

Mushtag, A.Q. and M. Afzal (2017), “Arab Spring: Its Causes and Consequences”, Journal of the Punjab University Historical Society, 30(1), 1-10.

Ogbonnaya, U.M. (2013), “Arab Spring in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya: A Comparative Analysis of Causes and Determinants”, Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, 11(3), 4-16.

Owoye, O. and O. Onafowora (2020), “The Role of Educated Leaders in Economic Growth and Development: Evidence from Central African Republic and Singapore,” The Singapore Economic Review, 65(1), 81-102.

Refle, J-E. (2019), “Literature Review – The Causes of the 2010/2011 Uprisings in Tunisia”, GREC - Groupe de Recherche sur les Elections, Université de Lausanne.

Robinson, K. (2020), “The Arab Spring at Ten Years:  What’s the Legacy of the Uprisings?”,  Council on Foreign Relations, <https://www.cfr.org/article/arab-spring-ten-years-whats-legacy-uprisings>. Retrieved on July 14, 2021.

Salih, K.E.O. (2013), “The Roots and Causes of the 2011 Arab Uprisings”, Arab Studies Quarterly, 35(2), 184-206.

Stock, J.H. and M.W. Watson (2019), Introduction to Econometrics, 4th Edition, Pearson Publishing Company: New York, NY.

Tekin, A. and Ӧ. Temel (2019), “Political and Constitutional Developments in Tunisia and Egypt in the Aftermath of the Arab Spring”, Law and Justice Review, 10(19), 193-239.

Wooldridge, J.M. (2016), Introductory Econometrics: A Modern Approach, 6th edition, Cengage Learning: Boston, MA.

World Bank (2020), Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI), Retrieved on June 12, 2021 from <https://databank.worldbank.org/source/worldwide-governance-indicators> and/or from <https://datacatalog.worldbank.org/dataset/worldwide-governance-indicators>.

Yousef, T.M., N. Aboueldahab, A.A. Ghafar, Y.H. Zoubir, A. Fathollah-Nejad and N. Kabbani (2020), “The Middle East and North Africa over the Next Decade:  Key Challenges and Policy Options”, Brookings Doha Center, March 3, Retrieved from <https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/the-middle-east-and-north-africa-over-the-next-decade-key-challenges-and-policy-options/> on July 24, 2021.

Zekri, I. (2016), “Dictatorships to Democracies: The Democratic Progress of Tunisia and Egypt Following the Arab Spring”, Aquila – The Florida Gulf Coast University Student Research Journal, 3(1), 29-35.

Register your account

First-time users should click on “Register your account” and enter the requested information. Upon successful registration, you will receive an e-mail with instructions to verify your registration.

Submission Guidelines

Authors’ login

Use the assigned user ID and password to login. Please, do not register again. Usernames and passwords may be changed after.

Quick search by author:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Back to the top

Institute for International Economics
of the Genoa Chamber of Commerce


Istituto di Economia Internazionale
Camera di Commercio di Genova
Via Garibaldi, 4 (III piano) - 16124 Genova (Italy)
www.ge.camcom.gov.it