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Culture and Corruption

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Author Info

  • Abigail Barr
  • Danila Serra

Abstract

Working with a sample of individuals from 43 countries, including some of the most and least corrupt in the world, we run an experiment in which: `private citizens` have to decide whether and how much to offer `public servants` in exchange for corrupt services; `public servants` have to decide whether and how much to accept; and offered and accepted bribes do harm to other members of society. We can predict who, among the younger members of our sample, will offer bribes with reference to the level of corruption prevailing in their home countries. And, by comparing behaviour across treatments, we can identify the effect on behaviour of an internalized social norm or preference for not engaging in bribery because it is harmful to society. We conclude that corruption is, in part, a cultural phenomenon.

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File URL: http://www.gprg.org/pubs/workingpapers/pdfs/gprg-wps-040.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number GPRG-WPS-040.

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Date of creation: 01 Mar 2006
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:gprg-wps-040

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Related research

Keywords: Corruption; Culture; Economic experiment; Social norms; Social preferences;

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References

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  1. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1997. "Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1251-88, November.
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  16. L. Cameron & A. Chaudhuri & N. Erkal & L. Gangadharan, 2005. "Do Attitudes Towards Corruption Differ Across Cultures? Experimental Evidence from Australia, India, Indonesia andSingapore," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 943, The University of Melbourne.
  17. Pedro C. Vicente, 2007. "Does Oil Corrupt? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in West Africa," Economics Series Working Papers 317, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  18. Roberta Gatti & Stefano Paternostro & Jamele Rigolini, 2003. "Individual attitudes toward corruption: do social effects matter?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3122, The World Bank.
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Cited by:
  1. Ting Gong & Shiru Wang, 2013. "Indicators and Implications of Zero Tolerance of Corruption: The Case of Hong Kong," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 112(3), pages 569-586, July.

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