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Letting the briber go free: an experiment on mitigating harassment bribes

  • Abbink, Klaus
  • Dasgupta, Utteeyo
  • Gangadharan, Lata
  • Jain, Tarun

This paper examines the effectiveness of using asymmetric liability to combat harassment bribes. Basu (2011) advocates legal immunity for bribe-givers, while retaining culpability for bribe-takers. Results from our experiment indicate that while this policy has the potential to significantly reduce corrupt practices, weak economic incentives for the bribe-giver, or retaliation by bribe-takers can mitigate the positive disciplining effect of such an implementation. As a result, asymmetric liability on its own may face challenges in the field.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 42176.

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Date of creation: 16 Oct 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:42176
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  1. Klaus Abbink & Jordi Brandts & Benedikt Herrmann & Henrik Orzen, 2007. "Inter-Group Conflict and Intra-Group Punishment in an Experimental Contest Game," Discussion Papers 2007-15, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  2. José Apesteguía & Martin Dufwenberg & Reinhard Selten, 2003. "Blowing the Whistle," Documentos de Trabajo - Lan Gaiak Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra 0303, Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra, revised 2003.
  3. Abigail Barr & Danila Serra, 2009. "The effects of externalities and framing on bribery in a petty corruption experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 488-503, December.
  4. Klaus Abbink & Heike Hennig-Schmidt, 2002. "Neutral versus Loaded Instructions in a Bribery Experiment," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse23_2002, University of Bonn, Germany.
  5. Danila Serra, 2012. "Combining Top-Down and Bottom-Up Accountability: Evidence from a Bribery Experiment," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 28(3), pages 569-587, August.
  6. Lambsdorff, Johann Graf & Frank, Björn, 2010. "Bribing versus gift-giving - An experiment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 347-357, June.
  7. Banuri, Sheheryar & Eckel, Catherine, 2012. "Experiments in culture and corruption : a review," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6064, The World Bank.
  8. J. Atsu Amegashie, 2013. "Consumers' Complaints, the Nature of Corruption, and Social Welfare," CESifo Working Paper Series 4295, CESifo Group Munich.
  9. Basu, Kaushik, 2011. "Why, for a Class of Bribes, the Act of Giving a Bribe should be Treated as Legal," MPRA Paper 50335, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Vivi Alatas & Lisa Cameron & Ananish Chaudhuri & Nisvan Erkal & Lata Gangadharan, 2009. "Subject pool effects in a corruption experiment: A comparison of Indonesian public servants and Indonesian students," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 113-132, March.
  11. Bigoni, Maria & Fridolfsson, Sven-Olof & Le Coq, Chloé & Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2008. "Fines, Leniency and Rewards in Antitrust: An Experiment," Working Paper Series 738, Research Institute of Industrial Economics, revised 06 Aug 2009.
  12. Dufwenberg, Martin & Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2012. "Legalizing Bribe Giving," CEPR Discussion Papers 9236, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Rose-Ackerman, Susan, 1975. "The economics of corruption," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 187-203, February.
  14. Aaron Lowen & Andrew Samuel, 2012. "Bribery and Endogenous Monitoring Effort: An Experimental Study," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 38(3), pages 356-380.
  15. Bj�rn Frank & Johann Graf Lambsdorff & Fr�d�ric Boehm, 2011. "Gender and Corruption: Lessons from Laboratory Corruption Experiments," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 23(1), pages 59-71, February.
  16. Vivi Alatas & Lisa Cameron & Ananish Chaudhuri & Nisvan Erkal & Lata Gangadharan, 2009. "Gender, Culture, and Corruption: Insights from an Experimental Analysis," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 663–680, January.
  17. Pranab Bardhan, 1997. "Corruption and Development: A Review of Issues," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 1320-1346, September.
  18. Graf Lambsdorff, Johann & Fink, Hady, 2006. "Combating corruption in Colombia: Perceptions and achievements," Passauer Diskussionspapiere, Volkswirtschaftliche Reihe V-44-06, University of Passau, Faculty of Business and Economics.
  19. Jana Krajcova & Andreas Ortmann, 2008. "Testing Leniency Programs Experimentally: The Impact of “Natural” Framing," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp372, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
  20. Cameron, Lisa & Chaudhuri, Ananish & Erkal, Nisvan & Gangadharan, Lata, 2009. "Propensities to engage in and punish corrupt behavior: Experimental evidence from Australia, India, Indonesia and Singapore," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(7-8), pages 843-851, August.
  21. Frey, Bruno S & Oberholzer-Gee, Felix, 1997. "The Cost of Price Incentives: An Empirical Analysis of Motivation Crowding-Out," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(4), pages 746-55, September.
  22. Schickora, Jan Theodor, 2011. "Bringing the Four-Eyes-Principle to the Lab," Discussion Papers in Economics 12160, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  23. Mauro, Paolo, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712, August.
  24. Christoph Engel & Sebastian Goerg & Gaoneng Yu, 2012. "Symmetric vs. Asymmetric Punishment Regimes for Bribery," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2012_01, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, revised May 2013.
  25. Jeffrey A. Miron, 1999. "The Effect of Alcohol Prohibition on Alcohol Consumption," NBER Working Papers 7130, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Klaus Abbink & Bernd Irlenbusch & Elke Renner, 2000. "An Experimental Bribery Game," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1389, Econometric Society.
  27. Van Rijckeghem, Caroline & Weder, Beatrice, 2001. "Bureaucratic corruption and the rate of temptation: do wages in the civil service affect corruption, and by how much?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 307-331, August.
  28. Klaus Abbink, 2006. "Laboratory experiments on corruption," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-38, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  29. Abbink, Klaus, 2004. "Staff rotation as an anti-corruption policy: an experimental study," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 887-906, November.
  30. Jordi Brandts & Gary Charness, 2011. "The strategy versus the direct-response method: a first survey of experimental comparisons," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 375-398, September.
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