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Media Freedom, Bureaucratic Incentives, and the Resource Curse

Georgy Egorov (), Sergei Guriev () and Konstantin Sonin ()

CEDI Discussion Paper Series from Centre for Economic Development and Institutions(CEDI), Brunel University

Abstract: How can a non-democratic ruler provide proper incentives for state bureaucracy? In the absense of competitive elections and separation of powers, the ruler has to gather information either from a centralized agency such as a secret service or a decentralized source such as media. The danger of using a secret service is that it can collude with bureaucrats; overcoming collusion is costly. Free media aggregate information and thus constrain bureaucrats, but might also help citizens to coordinate on actions against the incumbent. We endogenize the ruler’s choice in a dynamic model to argue that free media are less likely to emerge in resource-rich economies where the ruler is less interested in providing incentives to his subordinates. We show that this prediction is consistent with both cross-section and panel data.

Date: 2006-06
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Related works:
Journal Article: Media Freedom, Bureaucratic Incentives, and the Resource Curse (2007)
Working Paper: Media Freedom, Bureaucratic Incentives, and the Resource Curse (2006) Downloads
Working Paper: Media Freedom, Bureaucratic Incentives and the Resource Curse (2006) Downloads
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