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Paying Politicians: Not Too Little, Not Too Much

Alessandro Fedele () and Pierpaolo Giannoccolo

No BEMPS47, BEMPS - Bozen Economics & Management Paper Series from Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen

Abstract: How does pay affect the quality of politicians? This paper tackles the question by considering a three-period citizen candidate model where potential candidates vary in skills and in public service motivation. First, potential candidates observe the level of pay in politics and then simultaneously decide whether or not to run for office. Second, an election takes place and only one candidate is elected. Finally, the successful candidate provides a public good, while all the others work in the market sector. In a benchmark model where potential candidates differ only in skills, the quality of the elected politician is shown to increase with pay. If public service motivation is also considered, an inverted U-shaped relationship is found. The latter result is compatible with empirical evidence.

Keywords: Pay; Selection and Quality of Politicians; Skills; Public Service Motivation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 P16 J24 J3 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-lma and nep-pol
Date: 2018-01
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