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Does Indonesia Have A 'Low Pay' Civil Service?

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  • Deon Filmer
  • David Lindauer

Abstract

Government officials and policy analysts maintain that Indonesia's civil servants are poorly paid, and have been for decades, a conclusion that is supported by anecdotal evidence and casual empiricism. In this paper, the relationship between government and private compensation levels is systematically analysed using evidence from two large household data sets, the 1998 Sakernas and the 1999 Susenas. The results suggest that government workers with a high school education or less, representing three-quarters of the civil service, earn a pay premium over their private sector counterparts. Civil servants with more than a high school education earn less than they would in the private sector but, on average, the premium is far smaller than is commonly alleged, and is in keeping with public/private differentials in other countries. The results prove robust to varying econometric specifications and cast doubt on the proposition that low pay is an explanation for government corruption.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 37 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 189-205

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Handle: RePEc:taf:bindes:v:37:y:2001:i:2:p:189-205

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References

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  1. Behrman, Jere R & Deolalikar, Anil B, 1995. "Are There Differential Returns to Schooling by Gender? The Case of Indonesian Labour Markets," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 57(1), pages 97-117, February.
  2. Halvorsen, Robert & Palmquist, Raymond, 1980. "The Interpretation of Dummy Variables in Semilogarithmic Equations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 474-75, June.
  3. Smith, Theodore M, 1975. " Stimulating Performance in the Indonesian Bureaucracy: Gaps in the Administrator's Tool Kit," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(4), pages 719-38, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Gonzalez, Eduardo T. & Mendoza, Magdalena L., . "Governance in Southeast Asia: Issues and Options," Discussion Papers DP 2002-07, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
  2. Adang Budiman & Amanda Roan & Victor Callan, 2013. "Rationalizing Ideologies, Social Identities and Corruption Among Civil Servants in Indonesia During the Suharto Era," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 116(1), pages 139-149, August.
  3. Ross Mcleod, 2005. "The struggle to regain effective government under democracy in Indonesia," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(3), pages 367-386.
  4. Lewis, Maureen & Pettersson, Gunilla, 2009. "Governance in health care delivery : raising performance," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5074, The World Bank.
  5. Ross H McLeod, 2003. "After Soeharto: Prospects for reform and recovery in Indonesia," Departmental Working Papers 2003-10, The Australian National University, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics.
  6. Bales, Sarah & Rama, Martin, 2001. "Are public sector workers underpaid? - Appropriate comparators in a developing country," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2747, The World Bank.

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