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Condemning corruption while condoning inefficiency: an experimental investigation into voting behavior

Paulo Arvate () and Sergio Mittlaender ()
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Sergio Mittlaender: Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy

Public Choice, 2017, vol. 172, issue 3, 399-419

Abstract: Abstract This article reports results from an economic experiment that investigates the extent to which voters punish corruption and waste in elections. While both are responsible for reductions in voters’ welfare, they are not necessarily perceived as equally immoral. The empirical literature in political agency has not yet dealt with these two dimensions of voters’ choice calculus. Our results suggest that morality and norms are indeed crucial for a superior voting equilibrium in systems with heterogeneous politicians: while corruption always is punished, self-interest alone—in the absence of norms—leads to the acceptance and perpetuation of waste and social losses.

Keywords: Corruption; Waste; Elections; Experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C91 D72 H23 H72 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:172:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11127-017-0452-x