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On the Cultural Transmission of Corruption

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  • Hauk, Esther
  • Saez-Marti, Maria

Abstract

We provide a cultural explanation to the phenomenon of corruption in the framework of an overlapping generations model with intergenerational transmission of values. We show that the economy has two steady states with different levels of corruption. The driving force in the equilibrium selection process is the education effort exerted by parents which depends on the distribution of ethics in the population and on expectations about future policies. We propose some policy interventions which via parents' efforts have long-lasting effects on corruption and show the success of intensive education campaigns. Educating the young is a key element in reducing corruption successfully.
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Suggested Citation

  • Hauk, Esther & Saez-Marti, Maria, 2002. "On the Cultural Transmission of Corruption," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 311-335, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jetheo:v:107:y:2002:i:2:p:311-335
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sah, Raaj, 2007. "Corruption across countries and regions: Some consequences of local osmosis," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 2573-2598, August.
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    5. Becker, Gary S, 1976. "Altruism, Egoism, and Genetic Fitness: Economics and Sociobiology," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 817-826, September.
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    7. Cadot, Olivier, 1987. "Corruption as a gamble," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 223-244, July.
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    12. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & N'Guessan, Tchetche, 1999. "Competition and corruption in an agency relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 271-295, December.
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    JEL classification:

    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • Z1 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics

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