IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Agency Problems In Public Sector


  • Gyorgy Attila

    () (Academia de Studii Economice din Bucuresti, Finante, Asigurari, Banci si Burse de Valori)


Agency theory analyses the effects of contractual behaviour between two parties: principal(s) and agent(s). This relation is inevitably characterized by information asymmetry because agent holds a substantially larger volume of information than the principal. Due the negative effects of information asymmetry for the principal, this should cover supplementary costs with monitoring agents and/or grant incentives. The first objective of this paper is to emphasize the effects of information asymmetry, particularly on adverse selection and moral hazard. The second objective is to evaluate the negative effects of information asymmetry and to assess the viability of solutions proposed by scholars for mitigation. The third objective is linked with personal contribution, respectively to highlight specificity of agency theory in public sector and the mechanisms of action in this particular field. In this paper, literature is mainly based on scholarsâ€â"¢ contribution to the proposed theme. Little literature approaches agency theory in public sector, in most cases the analysis being restricted to general issues. Research methodology is based on synthesizing relevant information from literature and adapting them to public sector particularities. The results reflect some threats for public bodies in their contracting activity. Conclusions present also a set of solutions which could be used by public institutions to optimize their activity of mitigating information asymmetryâ€â"¢s effects. These solution guidelines could represent a useful instrument for make more efficient public money spending. Personal contribution and the novelty of this paper consist in presenting a new approach regarding mechanisms of managing information by agents. In case of public institutions, principals have more opportunities the take possession over the information managed by the agent. Nevertheless, agents can limit the principalâ€â"¢s access to vital information by offering excessively much information, combining few vital data with numerous unimportant information. For further research, agentâ€â"¢s information management should be depth and analyzed in which manner principal can control it.

Suggested Citation

  • Gyorgy Attila, 2012. "Agency Problems In Public Sector," Annals of Faculty of Economics, University of Oradea, Faculty of Economics, vol. 1(1), pages 708-712, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:ora:journl:v:1:y:2012:i:1:p:708-712

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Itoh Hideshi, 1993. "Coalitions, Incentives, and Risk Sharing," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 410-427, August.
    2. Antoine Faure-Grimaud & Jean-Jacques Laffont & David Martimort, 2003. "Collusion, Delegation and Supervision with Soft Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 253-279.
    3. de la Rosa, Leonidas Enrique, 2011. "Overconfidence and moral hazard," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 429-451.
    4. Gifford, Sharon, 1999. "Efficient moral hazard," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 427-442, December.
    5. Daniela MARINESCU & Dumitru MARIN, 2011. "Adverse Selection Models with Three States of Nature," Theoretical and Applied Economics, Asociatia Generala a Economistilor din Romania - AGER, vol. 0(2(555)), pages 33-46, February.
    6. Hao Zhang & Stefanos Zenios, 2008. "A Dynamic Principal-Agent Model with Hidden Information: Sequential Optimality Through Truthful State Revelation," Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 56(3), pages 681-696, June.
    7. Aloisio Pessoa_de_Araujo & Humberto L. Moreira, 2000. "Adverse Selection Problems without The Single Crossing Property," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1874, Econometric Society.
    8. Jeon, Seonghoon, 1996. "Moral hazard and reputational concerns in teams: Implications for organizational choice," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 297-315, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    agency theory; information asymmetry; adverse selection; moral hayard; public resources;

    JEL classification:

    • D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles
    • H59 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Other


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ora:journl:v:1:y:2012:i:1:p:708-712. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Catalin ZMOLE). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.