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Are Perceptions of Corruption Matching Reality? Theory and Evidence from Microdata

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Abstract

Some criticism has been raised on the actual capability of corruption perception-based indices to gauge the essence of concepts they aim to measure. One can argue that perceptions about corruption are not matching reality and could be the re?ection of distorted truth. Based on this evidence we provide a theoretical ground for the corruption decision-making process (objective corruption) and the corruption perception-making process (subjective corruption) which accounts for the role of media attention. From the theoretical model we are able to derive testable implications for the empirical analysis, i.e. whether socio and cultural norms can explain the gap between the two measures of corruption across Europe. We employ a generalised setting of the structural equation models to build latent indices of objective and subjective corruption from our microdata exploiting the information on various economic, geographic and socio-demographic factors that can a¤ect the perception and the experience of corruption practices. The resulting indices allow us to define country rankings for both types of corruption and draw a geopolitical picture of the phenomenon across Europe. We also show that countries where the quality of media is higher are associated with lower di¤erences between perceived and real corruption.

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  • Germana Corrado & Luisa Corrado & Giuseppe De Michele & Francesco Salustri, 2017. "Are Perceptions of Corruption Matching Reality? Theory and Evidence from Microdata," CEIS Research Paper 420, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 14 Dec 2017.
  • Handle: RePEc:rtv:ceisrp:420
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    Cited by:

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    2. Tommaso Proietti & Niels Haldrup & Oskar Knapik, 2017. "Spikes and memory in (Nord Pool) electricity price spot prices," CEIS Research Paper 422, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 18 Dec 2017.
    3. Lorenzo Ferrari & Francesco Salustri, 2020. "The relationship between corruption and chronic diseases: evidence from Europeans aged 50 years and older," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 65(3), pages 345-355, April.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Perceived and experienced corruption; Latent variables; Latent multi-dimensional index; Multiple indicators multiple causes models; Generalized SEM MIMIC.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C43 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Index Numbers and Aggregation
    • C83 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Survey Methods; Sampling Methods
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • R50 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - General

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