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An offer you can’t refuse: murdering journalists as an enforcement mechanism of corrupt deals

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  • Christian Bjørnskov

    (Aarhus University
    Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))

  • Andreas Freytag

    (Friedrich-Schiller Universität Jena)

Abstract

Anecdotal evidence suggests that journalists and bureaucrats in some countries are killed when they try to blow the whistle on corruption. We demonstrate in a simple game-theoretical model how murders can serve as an enforcer of corrupt deals under certain regime assumptions. Testing the main implications in an unbalanced panel of 179 countries observed through four periods, we find that corruption is strongly related to the incidence of murders of journalists in countries with almost full press freedom. While our results provide evidence that journalists are killed for corrupt reasons, they also suggest that some countries may have to go through quite violent periods when seeking to secure full freedom of the press.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Bjørnskov & Andreas Freytag, 2016. "An offer you can’t refuse: murdering journalists as an enforcement mechanism of corrupt deals," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 167(3), pages 221-243, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:167:y:2016:i:3:d:10.1007_s11127-016-0338-3
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-016-0338-3
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Hvem chikanerer russiske journalister?
      by Christian Bjørnskov in Punditokraterne on 2019-03-03 13:03:32

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    Cited by:

    1. Andrea Sáenz de Viteri Vázquez & Christian Bjørnskov, 2020. "Constitutional power concentration and corruption: evidence from Latin America and the Caribbean," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 509-536, December.
    2. Bjørnskov, Christian & Freytag, Andreas & Gutmann, Jerg, 2018. "Coups, Regime Transition, and the Dynamics of Press Freedom," Working Paper Series 1225, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
    3. Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya, 2015. "Fighting corruption or elections? The politics of anti-corruption policies in India: A subnational study," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(4), pages 1035-1052.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corruption; Rent-seeking; Murder;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption

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