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Education, Complaints, and Accountability

  • Juan Botero
  • Alejandro Ponce
  • Andrei Shleifer

Better-educated countries have better governments, an empirical regularity that holds in both dictatorships and democracies. Possible reasons for this fact are that educated people are more likely to complain about misconduct by government officials and that more frequent complaints encourage better behavior from officials. Newly assembled individual-level survey data from the World Justice Project show that, within countries, better-educated people are more likely to report official misconduct. The results are confirmed using other survey data on reporting crime and corruption. Citizens? complaints might thus be an operative mechanism that explains the link between education and the quality of government.

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File URL: http://scholar.harvard.edu/shleifer/node/69711
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Paper provided by Harvard University OpenScholar in its series Working Paper with number 69711.

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Handle: RePEc:qsh:wpaper:69711
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  1. Claudio Ferraz & Frederico Finan, 2011. "Electoral Accountability and Corruption: Evidence from the Audits of Local Governments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1274-1311, June.
  2. Naci Mocan, 2008. "What Determines Corruption? International Evidence From Microdata," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 46(4), pages 493-510, October.
  3. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & Andrei Shleifer, . "Teaching Practices and Social Capital," Working Paper 19523, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  4. Ferraz, Claudio & Finan, Frederico S., 2007. "Exposing Corrupt Politicians: The Effects of Brazil’s Publicly Released Audits on Electoral Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 2836, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Decio Coviello & Matteo Bobba, 2006. "Weak instruments and weak identification in estimating the effects of education on democracy," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6698, Inter-American Development Bank.
  6. Jakob Svensson, 2005. "Eight Questions about Corruption," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 19-42, Summer.
  7. Benjamin A. Olken, 2007. "Monitoring Corruption: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Indonesia," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 200-249.
  8. Claudio Ferraz & Frederico Finan & Diana B. Moreira, 2012. "Corrupting Learning: Evidence from Missing Federal Education Funds in Brazil," NBER Working Papers 18150, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Milligan, Kevin & Moretti, Enrico & Oreopoulos, Philip, 2004. "Does education improve citizenship? Evidence from the United States and the United Kingdom," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 1667-1695, August.
  10. Thomas S. Dee, 2003. "Are There Civic Returns to Education?," NBER Working Papers 9588, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ritva Reinikka & Jakob Svensson, 2005. "Fighting Corruption to Improve Schooling: Evidence from a Newspaper Campaign in Uganda," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 259-267, 04/05.
  12. Juan Botero & Alejandro Ponce & Andrei Shleifer, 2012. "Education and the Quality of Government," NBER Working Papers 18119, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Rohini Pande, 2011. "Can Informed Voters Enforce Better Governance? Experiments in Low-Income Democracies," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 3(1), pages 215-237, 09.
  14. Soares, Rodrigo R, 2004. "Crime Reporting as a Measure of Institutional Development," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 52(4), pages 851-71, July.
  15. Treisman, Daniel, 2000. "The causes of corruption: a cross-national study," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 399-457, June.
  16. Rafael Di Tella & Sebastian Edwards & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2010. "The Economics of Crime: Lessons for and from Latin America," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number dite09-1, August.
  17. Ritva Reinikka & Jakob Svensson, 2004. "Local Capture: Evidence From a Central Government Transfer Program in Uganda," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(2), pages 678-704, May.
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