Scientists determine causes of empires to fall despite ‘good government practices’

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According to the researchers, internal corruption and the abandonment of the basic founding principles of States had socioeconomic consequences that caused them to collapse.

The cause of the downfall of some of the most successful historical empires may have come from the gradual rise in corruption over time, according to a study published in the journal Frontiers in Political Science.

Researchers on an international team analyzed 30 ancient countries and empires, focusing their attention on the Roman Empire, the Empire of the Republic of Venice, as well as the Ming Dynasty (China) and the Mogol Empire (India), saying their leaders had “good government practices “and were” highly regarded “by citizens.

These societies flourished for hundreds of years and had a greater distribution of power and wealth than many other examples examined, say the research authors.

However, although the causes of their decline were varied, it was found that at some point these states “inexplicably began to abandon their basic state-building principles, fundamental to these policies, while ignoring their roles as effective leaders and role models. moral. ”

Due to the corruption of the leaders, these empires lost the confidence of the people, worsened fiscal health and government services, diminishing the ability of central authorities to control crime and administrative corruption. As a result, there was an increase in opposition movements and political polarization.

“The moral failure of leadership in this social environment brings with it a calamity, because the vital blood of the State, its resource base produced by the citizens, is threatened when there is a loss of confidence in the State, which brings with it social division, struggles, flight and reduced motivation to comply with tax obligations “, the study finds.

Thus, scientists use these examples to remind current leaders of the difficulty of maintaining sustainable political systems, which assume mutual and honest obligations between citizens and the state.

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