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Moonlighting Politicians: Motivation Matters!

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  • Fedele, Alessandro

    () (Free University of Bozen/Bolzano)

  • Naticchioni, Paolo

    () (University of Rome 3)

Abstract

In this paper we study optimal choices of self-selection into politics and commitment once in office on the part of citizens with heterogeneous abilities and heterogeneous motivations. Politicians can moonlight, i.e., they can work in the market sector while appointed in parliament. Our theoretical framework shows that high-ability citizens may enter politics. Yet while high-ability non-motivated (market-fit) politicians are likely to shirk, high-ability motivated (public-fit) ones are more committed to parliamentary activity. We test our predictions by using a unique database of Italian parliamentarians for the period 1996-2006. We find evidence of advantageous selection of the market-fit and the public-fit politicians in that they both display a pre-election income greater than that of the Italian population. We also show that the commitment of the market-fit parliamentarians in terms of voting attendance is negatively affected by income opportunities, whilst this is not the case for the public-fit ones.

Suggested Citation

  • Fedele, Alessandro & Naticchioni, Paolo, 2013. "Moonlighting Politicians: Motivation Matters!," IZA Discussion Papers 7500, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7500
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Alessandro Fedele & Paolo Naticchioni, 2016. "Moonlighting Politicians: Motivation Matters!," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 17(2), pages 127-156, May.
    2. Arnold, Felix & Kauder, Björn & Potrafke, Niklas, 2014. "Outside earnings, absence, and activity: Evidence from German parliamentarians," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 147-157.
    3. Felix Arnold & Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2014. "Beeinträchtigen Nebeneinkünfte die politischen Tätigkeiten von Bundestagsabgeordneten?," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 67(18), pages 34-39, September.
    4. Braendle, Thomas & Stutzer, Alois, 2016. "Selection of public servants into politics," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 696-719.
    5. Gavoille, Nicolas & Verschelde, Marijn, 2017. "Electoral competition and political selection: An analysis of the activity of French deputies, 1958–2012," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 180-195.
    6. Thomas Braendle & Alois Stutzer, 2017. "Voters and Representatives: How Should Representatives Be Selected?," CREMA Working Paper Series 2017-05, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    7. Hofer. Katharina, 2016. "Shirk or Work? On How Legislators React to Monitoring," Economics Working Paper Series 1616, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
    8. A. Fedele & P. Giannoccolo, 2013. "Moneycracy," Working Papers wp893, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    9. Alessandro Fedele & Pierpaolo Giannoccolo, 2018. "Paying Politicians: Not Too Little, Not Too Much," BEMPS - Bozen Economics & Management Paper Series BEMPS47, Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    moonlighting politicians; motivation;

    JEL classification:

    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions

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