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How corruptible are you? Bribery under uncertainty

Author

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  • Dmitry Ryvkin

    () (Department of Economics, Florida State University)

  • Danila Serra

    () (Department of Economics, Florida State University)

Abstract

We model corruption in a society as a result of bargaining for bribes between private citizens and public officials. We investigate the role that incomplete information with respect to the intrinsic moral cost of one's potential corruption partner plays out in his or her propensity to engage in bribery, and, consequently, the equilibrium level of corruption in the society. We assume that the cost of engaging in corruption is subject to strategic complementarities, which may lead to multiple corruption equilibria. We find that corruption is lowest when potential bribers and potential bribees are uncertain regarding each other's "corruptibility" and have asymmetric bargaining powers. Our uncertainty result provides theoretical support in favor of anti-corruption strategies, such as staff rotation in public offices, aimed at decreasing the social closeness of bribers and bribees. Our bargaining power result suggests that, under uncertainty, monopolistic public good provision has the same corruption-reducing effect as competitive public good provision.

Suggested Citation

  • Dmitry Ryvkin & Danila Serra, 2010. "How corruptible are you? Bribery under uncertainty," Working Papers wp2010_09_01, Department of Economics, Florida State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:fsu:wpaper:wp2010_09_01
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters,in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kobil Ruziev & Don Webber, 2017. "SMEs access to formal finance in post-communist economies: Do institutional structure and political connectedness matter?," Working Papers 20171701, Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol.
    2. Dmitry Ryvkin & Danila Serra, 2015. "Is more competition always better? An experimental study of extortionary corruption," Working Papers wp2015_10_01, Department of Economics, Florida State University.
    3. Rotondi, Valentina & Stanca, Luca, 2015. "The effect of particularism on corruption: Theory and empirical evidence," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 219-235.
    4. Dmitry Ryvkin & Danila Serra & James Tremewan, 2015. "I paid a bribe: Information Sharing and Extortionary Corruption," Working Papers wp2015_07_01, Department of Economics, Florida State University.
    5. Mbate, Michael, 2015. "Who bears the burden of bribery? Evidence from Public Service Delivery in Kenya," MPRA Paper 71654, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Dzhumashev, Ratbek, 2014. "Corruption and growth: The role of governance, public spending, and economic development," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 202-215.
    7. repec:pid:journl:v:55:y:2016:i:4:p:675-688 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Banerjee, Ritwik & Mitra, Arnab, 2017. "On Monetary and Non-Monetary Interventions to Combat Corruption," IZA Discussion Papers 10608, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Rodrigues-Neto, José A., 2014. "On corruption, bribes and the exchange of favors," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 152-162.
    10. King Yoong Lim, 2017. "The Dynamics of Corruption and Unemployment in a Growth Model with Heterogeneous Labour," Working Papers 198144263, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
    11. Mishra, Ajit & Samuel, Andrew, 2013. "Preemptive Bribery with Incomplete Information," Department of Economics Working Papers 37908, University of Bath, Department of Economics.
    12. Ivar Kolstad & Arne Wiig & Vincent Somville, 2014. "Devolutionary delusions? The effect of decentralization on corruption," CMI Working Papers 10, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway.
    13. Daniel Gingerich & Virginia Oliveros & Ana Corbacho & Mauricio Ruiz-Vega, 2015. "Corruption as a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: Evidence from a Survey Experiment in Costa Rica," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 88334, Inter-American Development Bank.
    14. Simona Fabrizi & Steffen Lippert, 2012. "Corruption and the Public Display of Wealth," Working Papers 1202, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised Jun 2012.
    15. Ratbek Dzhumashev, 2014. "The Two-Way Relationship Between Government Spending And Corruption And Its Effects On Economic Growth," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 32(2), pages 403-419, April.
    16. repec:smu:ecowpa:1301 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. repec:eee:jpolmo:v:39:y:2017:i:5:p:790-808 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. repec:eee:eecrev:v:94:y:2017:i:c:p:1-22 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    bribery; moral cost; bargaining model; incomplete information; multiple equilibria;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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