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The power of information in public services: Evidence from education in Uganda

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  • Reinikka, Ritva
  • Svensson, Jakob

Abstract

In this paper we argue that innovations in governance of social services are an effective way to improve outcomes such as attainment of universal primary education. To test this hypothesis we exploit an unusual policy experiment: a newspaper campaign in Uganda aimed at reducing the capture of public funds by providing schools (parents) with systematic information to monitor local officials' handling of a large education grant program. Combining survey and administrative data, we show that public access to information can be a powerful deterrent to the capture of funds at the local level and that the reduction in the capture of funds that resulted had a positive effect on school enrollment and learning outcomes.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 95 (2011)
Issue (Month): 7 ()
Pages: 956-966

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:7:p:956-966

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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Keywords: Public organizations; Educational finance; Economic development;

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References

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  1. Raghabendra Chattopadhyay & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Women as policy makers: Evidence from a randomized policy experiment in india," Framed Field Experiments 00224, The Field Experiments Website.
  2. Di Tella, Rafael & Schargrodsky, Ernesto, 2003. "The Role of Wages and Auditing during a Crackdown on Corruption in the City of Buenos Aires," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 46(1), pages 269-92, April.
  3. Priyanka Pandey & Sangeeta Goyal & Venkatesh Sundararaman, 2009. "Community participation in public schools: impact of information campaigns in three Indian states," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(3), pages 355-375.
  4. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Enrico Moretti, 2006. "Did Iraq Cheat the United Nations? Underpricing, Bribes, and the Oil for Food Program," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1211-1248, November.
  5. François Bourguignon & Maurizio Bussolo & Luiz A. Pereira da Silva, 2008. "The Impact of Macroeconomic Policies on Poverty and Income Distribution : Macro-Micro Evaluation Techniques and Tools," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6586, February.
  6. Kremer, Michael R. & Miguel, Edward & Thornton, Rebecca, 2009. "Incentives to Learn," Scholarly Articles 3716457, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Benjamin A. Olken, 2005. "Monitoring Corruption: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Indonesia," NBER Working Papers 11753, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Abhijit Banerjee & Shawn Cole & Esther Duflo & Leigh Linden, 2005. "Remedying education: Evidence from two randomized experiments in india," Framed Field Experiments 00122, The Field Experiments Website.
  9. Reinikka, Ritva & Svensson, Jakob, 2001. "Explaining Leakage of Public Funds," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  10. Olken, Benjamin A., 2006. "Corruption and the costs of redistribution: Micro evidence from Indonesia," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(4-5), pages 853-870, May.
  11. Svensson, Jakob, 2002. "Who Must Pay Bribes and How Much? Evidence from a cross-section of firms," Seminar Papers 713, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  12. Edward Miguel & Michael Kremer, 2004. "Worms: Identifying Impacts on Education and Health in the Presence of Treatment Externalities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 159-217, 01.
  13. Glewwe, Paul & Kremer, Michael, 2006. "Schools, Teachers, and Education Outcomes in Developing Countries," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  14. Paul Glewwe, 2002. "Schools and Skills in Developing Countries: Education Policies and Socioeconomic Outcomes," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 436-482, June.
  15. Jakob Svensson, 2005. "Eight Questions about Corruption," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 19-42, Summer.
  16. Das, Jishnu, 2004. "Equity in educational expenditures : can government subsidies help?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3249, The World Bank.
  17. Ritva Reinikka & Jakob Svensson, 2004. "Local Capture: Evidence From a Central Government Transfer Program in Uganda," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(2), pages 678-704, May.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Baird, Sarah & McIntosh, Craig & Ozler, Berk, 2011. "The regressive demands of demand-driven development," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5883, The World Bank.
  2. Holvoet, Nathalie & Inberg, Liesbeth & Sekirime, Susan, 2013. "Institutional analysis of monitoring and evaluation systems : comparing M&E systems in Ugandas health and education sector," IOB Working Papers 2013.03, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy and Management (IOB).
  3. Tetsushi Sonobe, 2012. "An Inquiry into Corruption Norms: Survey Data of GRIPS Alumni," GRIPS Discussion Papers 12-15, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies.
  4. Amegashie, J. Atsu, 2013. "Consumers' Complaints, the Nature of Corruption, and Social Welfare," MPRA Paper 47215, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Suryadarma, Daniel & Yamauchi, Chikako, 2013. "Missing public funds and targeting performance: Evidence from an anti-poverty transfer program in Indonesia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 62-76.
  6. Dena Ringold & Alaka Holla & Margaret Koziol & Santhosh Srinivasan, 2012. "Citizens and Service Delivery : Assessing the Use of Social Accountability Approaches in the Human Development Sectors," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2377, February.
  7. Ferraz, Claudio & Finan, Frederico & Moreira, Diana B., 2012. "Corrupting learning," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(9-10), pages 712-726.
  8. Beekman, Gonne & Bulte, Erwin H. & Nillesen, Eleonora E.M., 2013. "Corruption and economic activity: Micro level evidence from rural Liberia," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 70-79.
  9. Sophie King, 2014. "The political economy of social accountability in rural Uganda," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series 19514, BWPI, The University of Manchester.

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