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Does expenditure in public governance guarantee less corruption? Non-linearities and complementarities of the rule of law

Guerrero, OA; Castañeda, G; (2021) Does expenditure in public governance guarantee less corruption? Non-linearities and complementarities of the rule of law. Economics of Governance 10.1007/s10101-021-00252-z. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Corruption is an endemic societal problem with profound implications in the development of nations. In combating this issue, cross-national evidence supporting the effectiveness of the rule of law seems at odds with poorly realized outcomes from reforms inspired in the academic literature. This paper provides an explanation for such contradiction. By building a computational approach, we develop three methodological novelties into the empirical study of corruption: (1) modeling government expenditure as a more adequate intervention variable than traditional indicators, (2) generating large within-country variation by means of bottom-up simulations (instead of cross-national data pooling), and (2) accounting for all possible interactions between covariates through a spillover network. Our estimates suggest that, the least developed a country is, the more difficult it is to find the right combination of policies that lead to reductions in corruption. We characterize this difficulty through a rugged landscape that governments navigate when changing the total budget size and the relative expenditure towards the rule of law. Importantly our method helps identifying the—country-specific—policy issues that complement the rule of law in the fight against corruption.

Type: Article
Title: Does expenditure in public governance guarantee less corruption? Non-linearities and complementarities of the rule of law
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s10101-021-00252-z
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10101-021-00252-z
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Corruption, Rule of law, Development, Public expenditure, Agent-based model, Computational
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10127298
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