Bureaucratic Advice and Political Governance
AbstractPoliticians typically do not know what policies are best for achieving their broad objectives, so rely on bureaucrats for advice. Bureaucrats are better informed, so can manipulate outcomes by proposing policies that suit their interests. We capture this conflict of interests using a model of political decision-making that focuses on the interaction between politicians and the bureaucracies that advise them. In the basic model, a representative bureaucrat, knowing the characteristics of a given project, recommends to a representative politician whether to adopt it. If the politician chooses to adopt the project, its characteristics are revealed ex post. On the basis of the revealed outcome, the politician decides whether to discipline the bureaucrat. The bureaucrat anticipates imperfectly the chances of discipline when making an ex ante recommendation. When project characteristics are multi-dimensional, the politician can choose whether to seek advice from one bureaucrat or more than one. We compare outcomes in these centralized and decentralized regimes.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Queen's University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1070.
Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
Other versions of this item:
- H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
- D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-06-03 (All new papers)
- NEP-PBE-2006-06-03 (Public Economics)
- NEP-POL-2006-06-03 (Positive Political Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alesina, Alberto F & Tabellini, Guido, 2004.
"Bureaucrats or Politicians?,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
4252, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2004. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," NBER Working Papers 10241, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," Levine's Working Paper Archive 784828000000000638, David K. Levine.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2003. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," Working Papers 238, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2003. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2009, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2004. "Bureaucrats or Politicians?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1130, CESifo Group Munich.
- Hao Li & Sherwin Rosen & Wing Suen, 2000.
"Conflicts and Common Interests in Committees,"
Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers
0341, Econometric Society.
- V. Crawford & J. Sobel, 2010.
"Strategic Information Transmission,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
544, David K. Levine.
- Canice Prendergast, 2003. "The Limits of Bureaucratic Efficiency," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(5), pages 929-958, October.
- Banks, Jeffrey S, 1990. "Monopoly Agenda Control and Asymmetric Information," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(2), pages 445-64, May.
- Hao Li & Wing Suen, 2004. "Delegating Decisions to Experts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(S1), pages S311-S335, February.
- Banks, Jeffrey S., 1993.
"Two-sided uncertainty in the monopoly agenda setter model,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 429-444, March.
- Banks, J.S., 1990. "Two-Sided Uncertainty In The Monopoly Agenda Setter Model," RCER Working Papers 215, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
- Thomas Romer & Howard Rosenthal, 1978. "Political resource allocation, controlled agendas, and the status quo," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 33(4), pages 27-43, December.
- Robin Boadway & Jean-Francois Tremblay, 2005.
"A Theory of Vertical Fiscal Imbalance,"
2006-04, University of Kentucky, Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations.
- Hikaru Ogawa & David E. Wildasin, 2009.
"Think Locally, Act Locally: Spillovers, Spillbacks, and Efficient Decentralized Policymaking,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1206-17, September.
- Hikaru Ogawa & David E. Wildasin, 2007. "Think Locally, Act Locally: Spillovers, Spillbacks, and Efficient Decentralized Policymaking," CESifo Working Paper Series 2142, CESifo Group Munich.
- Hikaru Ogawa & David Wildasin, 2007. "Think Locally, Act Locally: Spillovers, Spillbacks, and Efficient Decentralized Policymaking," Working Papers 2007-06, University of Kentucky, Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations.
- Christos Kotsogiannis & Robert Schwager, 2006.
"Fiscal Equalization and Yardstick Competition,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
1865, CESifo Group Munich.
- David Wildasin, 2007.
"Pre-Emption: Federal Statutory Intervention in State Taxation,"
2007-05, University of Kentucky, Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations.
- Wildasin, David E., 2007. "Pre–Emption: Federal Statutory Intervention in State Taxation," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 60(3), pages 649-62, September.
- Marina Dodlova, 2013. "Political Accountability and Real Authority of Government Bureaucracy," CESifo Working Paper Series 4443, CESifo Group Munich.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Babcock).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.