Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

The High Politics of IMF Lending

  • Strom C. Thacker (a1)

Analysts have long suspected that politics affects the lending patterns of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but none have adequately specified or systematically tested competing explanations. This paper develops a political explanation of IMF lending and tests it statistically on the developing countries between 1985 and 1994. It finds that political realignment toward the United States, the largest power in the IMF, increases a country's probability of receiving an IMF loan. A country's static political alignment position has no significant impact during this period, suggesting that these processes are best modeled dynamically. An analysis of two subsamples rejects the hypothesis that the IMF has become less politicized since the end of the cold war and suggests that the influence of politics has actually increased since 1990. The behavior of multilateral organizations is still driven by the political interests of their more powerful member states.

Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Graham Bird , “The International Monetary Fund and the Developing Countries: A Review of the Evidence and Policy Options,” International Organization 50, no. 3 (1996)

Tony Killick , IMF Programs in Developing Countries: Design and Impact (London: Routledge, 1995)

Giulio M. Gallarotti , “The Limits of International Organization: Systematic Failure in the Management of International Relations,” International Organization 45, no. 2 (1991).

Richard Swedberg , “The Doctrine of Economic Neutrality of the IMF and the World Bank,” Journal of Peace Research 23 no. 4 (1986).

R. S. Eckaus , “How the IMF Lives with Its Conditionality,” Policy Sciences 19 (October 1986).

Lars Schoultz , “Politics, Economics, and U.S. Participation in Multilateral Development Banks,” International Organization 36, no. 3 (1982)

Jonathan Eaton and Mark Gersovitz , “Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis,” Review of Economic Studies 48 (April 1981).

E. A. Brett , “The World's View of the IMF,” in Latin America Bureau , ed., The Poverty Brokers: The IMF and Latin America (London: Latin America Bureau, 1983)

Manuel Pastor , “The Effects of IMF Programs in the Third World: Debate and Evidence from Latin America,” World Development 15 (Fall 1987)

John H. Aldrich and Forrest D. Nelson , Linear Probability, Logit, andProbit Models (Beverly Hills, Calif: Sage, 1984).

Charles W. Kegley Jr. and Steven W. Hook , “U.S. Foreign Aid and U.N. Voting: Did Reagan's Linkage Strategy Buy Deference or Defiance?” International Studies Quarterly 35 (September 1991).

Yeon Kim and Bruce Russett , “The New Politics of Voting Alignments in the United Nations General Assembly,” International Organization 50, no. 4 (1996)

Steven K. Holloway and Rodney Tomlinson , “The New World Order and the General Assembly: Bloc Realignment at the UN in the Post-Cold War World,” Canadian Journal of Political Science 28, no. 2 (1995)

Brian W. Tomlin , “Measurement Validation: Lessons from the Use and Misuse of UN General Assembly Roll-Call Votes,” International Organization 39, no. 1 (1985)

Kenneth J. Menkhaus and Charles W. Kegley Jr., “The Compliant Foreign Policy of the Dependent State Revisited: Empirical Linkages and Lessons from the Case of Somalia,” Comparative Political Studies 21, no. 3 (1988).

James A. Stimson , “Regression in Space and Time: A Statistical Essay,” American Journal of Political-Science 29, no. 4 (1985)

Nathaniel Beck Jonathan N. Katz , and Richard Tucker , “Taking Time Seriously: Time-Series-Cross-Section Analysis with a Binary Dependent Variable,” American Journal Political Science 42, no. 4 (1998).

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

World Politics
  • ISSN: 0043-8871
  • EISSN: 1086-3338
  • URL: /core/journals/world-politics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 30 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 1065 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 23rd June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.