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Can Corruption Be Studied in the Lab? Comparing a Field and a Lab Experiment

  • Olivier Armantier
  • Amadou Boly

This paper makes an attempt at testing the external validity of corruption experiments by moving from the lab in a developed country, to where it matters the most, the field in a developing country. In our experiment a candidate proposes a bribe to a grader in order to obtain a better grade. We find the direction and the magnitude of most treatment effects to be statistically indistinguishable between the lab and the field. In particular, increasing the graders'.wage reduces in both environments the probability to accept the bribe. Finally, we identify several micro-determinants of corruption (age, religiousness, ability). Le présent article essaie de tester la validité externe des expériences sur la corruption en quittant le laboratoire dans un pays développé pour le terrain dans un pays en développement, où la corruption importe encore plus. Dans notre expérience, un candidat offre un pot-de-vin à un correcteur afin d'obtenir une meilleure note. Nous trouvons que la direction et la magnitude de la plupart des effets de traitement sont statistiquement indistinctibles entre le laboratoire et le terrain. En particulier, augmenter la rémunération des correcteurs réduit la probabilité d'accepter le pot-de-vin aussi bien en laboratoire que sur le terrain. Enfin, nous identifions plusieurs micro-déterminants de la corruption (âge, religiosité, habilité).

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Paper provided by CIRANO in its series CIRANO Working Papers with number 2008s-26.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 01 Sep 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:2008s-26
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