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Benchmarking Politicians

  • Estache, Antonio
  • Foucart, Renaud

We study a political system in which voters can optimally pick between political platforms, but cannot screen the quality of individual politicians associated with these platforms. A bad individual achievement can correspond to either incompetence (adverse selection) or corruption (moral hazard). Information could improve, if independent experts assess achievements as compared to commitments, allowing independent judges to investigate possible corruption. We find that while good experts are always beneficial as they increase transparency, the impact of the quality of judges is ambiguous. Above a threshold, with risk-averse social planners, good judges increase the incentive-compatible punishment of politicians, at the cost of possible judiciary mistakes.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 9467.

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Date of creation: May 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:9467
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  1. Becker, Johannes & Peichl, Andreas & Rincke, Johannes, 2008. "Politicians' Outside Earnings and Electoral Competition," Discussion Papers in Economics 2206, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Kotakorpi, Kaisa & Poutvaara, Panu, 2011. "Pay for politicians and candidate selection: An empirical analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7), pages 877-885.
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  6. Michael Smart & Daniel M. Sturm, 2006. "Term limits and electoral accountability," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19771, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  7. Simeon Djankov & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2010. "Disclosure by Politicians," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 179-209, April.
  8. McCubbins, Mathew D & Noll, Roger G & Weingast, Barry R, 1987. "Administrative Procedures as Instruments of Political Control," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 243-77, Fall.
  9. Panu Poutvaara & Tuomas Takalo, 2004. "Candidate Quality," Public Economics 0406009, EconWPA.
  10. Peichl, Andreas & Pestel, Nico & Siegloch, Sebastian, 2011. "The Politicians' Wage Gap: Insights from German Members of Parliament," IZA Discussion Papers 5520, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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