A new working paper has been added to the NOVAFRICA Working Paper Series. Written by Alex Armand, Alexander Coutts, Pedro Vicente and Inês Vilela this paper proposes a novel corruption game to characterize the interaction between actual political leaders and citizens and implement it in Northern Mozambique.
Title: Measuring corruption in the field using behavioral games
Alex Armand (Nova School of Business and Economics Nova School of Business and Economics, CEPR, Institute for Fiscal Studies and NOVAFRICA)
Alexander Coutts (Schulich School of Business – York University, and NOVAFRICA)
Pedro Vicente (Nova School of Business and Economics, BREAD, and NOVAFRICA)
Inês Vilela (Royal Holloway – University of London, and NOVAFRICA)
Corruption is often harmful for economic development, yet it is difficult to measure due to its illicit nature. We propose a novel corruption game to characterize the interaction between actual political leaders and citizens and implement it in Northern Mozambique.
Contrary to the game-theoretic prediction, both leaders and citizens engage in corruption. Importantly, corruption in the game is correlated with real-world corruption by leaders: citizens send bribes to leaders whom we observe appropriating community money, and these leaders are likely to reciprocate the bribes. In corrupt behavior, we identify an important trust dimension captured by a standard trust game.
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