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Media freedom and democracy in the fight against corruption

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  • Bhattacharyya, Sambit
  • Hodler, Roland

Abstract

Democratization and media freedom have been suggested as useful tools in the fight against political corruption, but so far their interplay in this fight has received scant attention. We present a game theoretic model which allows for varying quality of media freedom and democratic institutions. The model predicts, among others, that democratization and media freedom are complements in the fight against political corruption. We test our theoretical predictions using differences-in-differences estimations and panel data covering 129 countries from 1980 to 2007. We find evidence of causal effects of democratization and media freedom on corruption, and that the two are complements. Our main results hold after controlling for income, country fixed effects, and continent-specific time-varying shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Bhattacharyya, Sambit & Hodler, Roland, 2015. "Media freedom and democracy in the fight against corruption," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 13-24.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:39:y:2015:i:c:p:13-24
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpoleco.2015.03.004
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    Cited by:

    1. Joël CARIOLLE, 2018. "Corruption determinants in developing and transition economies: Insights from a multi-level analysis," Working Papers P229, FERDI.
    2. Gutmann, Jerg & Padovano, Fabio & Voigt, Stefan, 2020. "Perception vs. experience: Explaining differences in corruption measures using microdata," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 65(C).
    3. Joël CARIOLLE, 2016. "The voracity and scarcity effects of export booms and busts on bribery," Working Papers P146, FERDI.
    4. Bhattacharyya, Sambit & Conradie, Louis & Arezki, Rabah, 2017. "Resource discovery and the politics of fiscal decentralization," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 366-382.
    5. Debski, Julia & Jetter, Michael & Mösle, Saskia & Stadelmann, David, 2018. "Gender and corruption: The neglected role of culture," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 526-537.
    6. Poutvaara, Panu & Ropponen, Olli, 2018. "Shocking news and cognitive performance," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 93-106.
    7. Gans-Morse, Jordan & Borges, Mariana & Makarin, Alexey & Mannah-Blankson, Theresa & Nickow, Andre & Zhang, Dong, 2018. "Reducing bureaucratic corruption: Interdisciplinary perspectives on what works," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 171-188.
    8. Zakharov, Nikita, 2019. "Does corruption hinder investment? Evidence from Russian regions," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 39-61.
    9. Jakimow, Tanya, 2018. "A moral atmosphere of development as a share: Consequences for urban development in Indonesia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 47-56.
    10. Eugen Dimant & Guglielmo Tosato, 2018. "Causes And Effects Of Corruption: What Has Past Decade'S Empirical Research Taught Us? A Survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(2), pages 335-356, April.
    11. Olmos, Lorena & Bellido, Héctor & Román-Aso, Juan A., 2020. "The effects of mega-events on perceived corruption," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    12. Jesús Peiró-Palomino & Andrés J. Picazo-Tadeo & Vicente Rios, 2020. "Social Progress Around the World: Measurement, Evolution and Convergence," Working Papers 2006, Department of Applied Economics II, Universidad de Valencia.
    13. Héctor Bellido & Lorena Olmos & Juan A. Román-Aso, 2021. "The influence of government ideology on corruption: the impact of the Great Recession," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 38(2), pages 677-708, July.
    14. Maider Aldaz Odriozola & Igor Álvarez Etxeberria, 2021. "Determinants of Corporate Anti-Corruption Disclosure: The Case of the Emerging Economics," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 13(6), pages 1-17, March.
    15. Binhadab, Nouf & Breen, Michael & Gillanders, Robert, 2018. "The Role of a Free Press in Combating Business Corruption," MPRA Paper 88954, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Capasso, Salvatore & Santoro, Lodovico, 2018. "Active and passive corruption: Theory and evidence," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 103-119.
    17. Changwony, Frederick Kibon & Paterson, Audrey S., 2019. "Accounting practice, fiscal decentralization and corruption," The British Accounting Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(5).
    18. Emmanuel Yeboah-Assiamah, 2017. "‘Strong Personalities’ and ‘Strong Institutions’ Mediated by a ‘Strong Third Force’: Thinking ‘Systems’ in Corruption Control," Public Organization Review, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 545-562, December.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corruption; Media freedom; Democratization; Political institutions;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government

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