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Bribing to Circumvent Capture and Facilitate Participation in Social Programs: Evidence from Indian Villages

Author

Listed:
  • Raghbendra Jha
  • Hari K. Nagarajan
  • Kailash C. Pradhan

Abstract

Given that the phenomenon of capture of public programs by sections the population is rampant in developing countries, households can indulge in a strategy to improve their odds of participating in public programs by bribing the suppliers of such programs. This is an important issue affecting both the supply of local public goods and the incidence of corruption. To the best of our knowledge there is no analysis of the impact of bribery on the odds of participating in a local public goods program, anywhere. Using a unique data set for rural India this paper addresses the question of whether households bribe elected officials responsible for assuring such supply to improve their access to local public goods. We find considerable evidence of such bribing. We also model the welfare effects of such bribing on groups of households as well as the impact of bribery on aggregate welfare. Several policy conclusions are advanced.

Suggested Citation

  • Raghbendra Jha & Hari K. Nagarajan & Kailash C. Pradhan, 2011. "Bribing to Circumvent Capture and Facilitate Participation in Social Programs: Evidence from Indian Villages," ASARC Working Papers 2011-13, The Australian National University, Australia South Asia Research Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:pas:asarcc:2011-13
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    File URL: https://crawford.anu.edu.au/acde/asarc/pdf/papers/2011/WP2011_13.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pasquale Scandizzo & Raghav Gaiha & Katsushi Imai, 2009. "Does the employment guarantee scheme stabilize household incomes in rural India?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(12), pages 1221-1225.
    2. Alesina, Alberto & Spear, Stephen E., 1988. "An overlapping generations model of electoral competition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 359-379, December.
    3. Raghbendra Jha & Sambit Bhattacharyya & Raghav Gaiha, 2011. "Temporal variation of capture of anti-poverty programs: rural public works and food for work programs in rural India," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(3), pages 349-362.
    4. Kaivan Munshi & Mark R. Rosenzweig, 2005. "Why is Mobility in India so Low? Social Insurance, Inequality, and Growth," CID Working Papers 121, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
    5. Bernard Caillaud & Jean Tirole, 2002. "Parties as Political Intermediaries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1453-1489.
    6. Abhijit Banerjee & Kaivan Munshi, 2004. "How Efficiently is Capital Allocated? Evidence from the Knitted Garment Industry in Tirupur," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 19-42.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Bribery; Program Capture; Welfare Effects; Rural India;

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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