A similar development is apparent in economic studies using political instability as an independent variable. Such studies have shifted emphasis from analyzing political stability in the traditional sense towards institutions. Early studies of growth, such as the 1992 work of Levine and David Renelt, find that the number of revolutions and coups has a robust influence on investment, which in turn influences growth. Daron Acemoglu and his colleagues used indices from the PRS group and POLITY to test the impact of institutions on growth. In the investment literature, Alberto Alesina and Roberto Perotti and Jakob Svensson use indices of political unrest and violence, and indices of government change, as independent variables. Aymo Brunetti and Beatrice Weder, however, include both objective measures and perceptions indices such as those of the ICRG. Moreover, in early-twenty-first century studies of foreign direct investment (FDI), researchers frequently use perceptions indices. Steven Globerman and Daniel Shapiro use the Kaufmann governance indices to explain the pattern of FDI across countries, while Philipp Harms and Heinrich W. Ursprung use a set of ICRG indices for the same purpose.

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