There has been contradicting evidence on whether being a democratic state is correlated with economic growth and/or higher GDP per capita. For instance, Barro (1997) argues in his book that a democratic transition and providing the public with more political rights do not lead to higher economic growth per se. More recent literature by Acemoglu et al. (2019) challenges Barro's view and suggests that becoming a democracy is associated with higher GDP per capita in the long-run. The paper's findings are based on data 175 countries between 1960 to 2010,
I ran the same correlation between using aggregate log GDP and democracy but with 184 countries and using data from 2010 onwards until 2019. However, I used democracy index by the EIU. I found no apparent relationship between the two indicators, and I am curious what might be causing this? For instance, one explanation might be the typical measurement error/drawbacks of relying heavily on democratic score indices such as the one used here or by Acemoglu et al. (2019). Another hypothesis is that the world has changed drastically in the past decade, and specifically the economic rapid rise of high growth brutal autocracies such as China, UAE, Singapore, etc might be causing us to observe this small correlation between the two measures (i.e. log GDP and democracy).