Finally someone has taken the time and put all his energy into finding out the truth of the matter !
Missionaries, in particular, Anglo-Saxon Protestant (and theologically evangelical ) missionaries, have majorly contributed to the development and the democratisation of former colonial countries.
Read this article : Surprising Discovery about missionaries
It corroborates what I had heard years ago in Australia explaining how missionaries contributed to recording Aboriginal language and culture before it got lost in the westernisation of Aboriginal population. Their efforts to speak the language and to understand the mentality in order to explain Christianity meant that much valuable research was done.
Another interesting text : One Blood , by Dr. John Harris, Ed Albatross Books
(I have a second hand copy for sale if anyone is interested !)
Notice when reading the article, that the researcher, Woodberry, refers to the lesser, frankly negative influence of French mission work in French colonies. I can corroborate that information from my understanding of the French culture and history.