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The Ill Effects of Public Sector Corruption in the Water and Sanitation Sector


  • Nejat Anbarci
  • Monica Escaleras
  • Charles A. Register


In general, given a particular set of institutions, the greater a county’s per capita income, the more extensive will be its provision of goods and services that require concerted public action. We contend that one of the most important aspects of institutions in this regard is public sector corruption. We test this contention by analyzing 85 countries observed in 1990, 1995, 2000, and 2004—the only years for which data on improved drinking water and adequate sanitation are available. The models point to statistically significant, negative relations between corruption and access to both improved drinking water and adequate sanitation.

Suggested Citation

  • Nejat Anbarci & Monica Escaleras & Charles A. Register, 2009. "The Ill Effects of Public Sector Corruption in the Water and Sanitation Sector," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 85(2), pages 363-377.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:85:y:2009:i:2:p:363-377

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
    2. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1995. "Institutions and Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Indicators," MPRA Paper 23118, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. World Bank, 2006. "World Development Indicators 2006," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 8151.
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    Cited by:

    1. Berg, Sanford V. & Jiang, Liangliang & Lin, Chen, 2012. "Regulation and corporate corruption: New evidence from the telecom sector," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 22-43.
    2. repec:eee:poleco:v:49:y:2017:i:c:p:47-70 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Monica Escaleras & Shu Lin & Charles Register, 2010. "Freedom of information acts and public sector corruption," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 145(3), pages 435-460, December.
    4. Yamamura, Eiji & Andrés, Antonio R., 2011. "Does corruption affect suicide? Empirical evidence from OECD countries," MPRA Paper 31622, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Zohal Hessami, 2013. "Corruption, Public Procurement, and the Budget Composition: Theory and Evidence from OECD Countries," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2013-27, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
    6. Choe, Chongwoo & Raschky, Paul A., 2016. "Media, institutions, and government action: Prevention vs. palliation in the time of cholera," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 75-93.
    7. Farzanegan, Mohammad Reza & Witthuhn, Stefan, 2017. "Corruption and political stability: Does the youth bulge matter?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 47-70.
    8. Hessami, Zohal, 2014. "Political corruption, public procurement, and budget composition: Theory and evidence from OECD countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 372-389.
    9. Per G. Fredriksson & Eric Neumayer, 2016. "Corruption and Climate Change Policies: Do the Bad Old Days Matter?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 63(2), pages 451-469, February.
    10. Berg, Sanford V., 2013. "Best practices in regulating State-owned and municipal water utilities," Documentos de Proyectos 542, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL).
    11. Chongwoo Choe & Paul A. Raschky, 2011. "Media, Democracy, and Government Action: Prevention vs. Palliation in the Time of Cholera," ISER Discussion Paper 0812, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    12. Eiji Yamamura & Antonio Andrés & Marina Katsaiti, 2012. "Does Corruption Affect suicide? Econometric Evidence from OECD Countries," Atlantic Economic Journal, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 40(2), pages 133-145, June.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism


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