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Letter Grading Government Efficiency

Author

Listed:
  • Chong, Alberto
  • La Porta, Rafael
  • Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio
  • Shleifer, Andrei

Abstract

We mailed letters to non-existent business addresses in 159 countries (10 per country), and measured whether they come back to the return address in the United States and how long it takes. About 60% of the letters were returned, taking over six months, on average. The results provide new objective indicators of government efficiency across countries, based on a simple and universal service, and allow us to shed light on its determinants. The evidence suggests that both technology and management quality influence government efficiency, just as they do that of the private sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Chong, Alberto & La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei, 2014. "Letter Grading Government Efficiency," Scholarly Articles 12111439, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:12111439
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • L32 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Public Enterprises; Public-Private Enterprises
    • L87 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Postal and Delivery Services
    • P48 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Political Economy; Legal Institutions; Property Rights; Natural Resources; Energy; Environment; Regional Studies

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