EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

The impact of career concerns and cognitive dissonance on bureaucrats’ use of cost-benefit analysis

Johanna Jussila Hammes ()
Additional contact information
Johanna Jussila Hammes : VTI, Postal: Centrum för Transportstudier (CTS), Teknikringen 10, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden

No 2017:5, Working papers in Transport Economics from CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI)

Abstract: Previous research shows that a Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA) is most often not conducted ahead of decisions about environmental, energy and climate policy in Sweden. Our point of departure is the observation that civil servants can have real authority (Maskin & Tirole, 2004). We proceed to construct a theoretical model that explains why bureaucrats may choose not to conduct a CBA. We show that given the initial policy chosen by an agenda setter, those bureaucrats who choose to stay put working with the policy are those whose policy preferences are closest to the initial policy. Moreover, bureaucrats over time adjust their preferences in the direction of the initial policy. Those bureaucrats who strongly disagree with the initial policy choose to quit instead of taking the cognitive costs associated with the initial policy. A CBA might call the initial policy into question. The civil servants then have an incentive not to conduct a CBA and take on the cognitive costs associated with having to adjust their attitudes in a new direction. Only in the presence of a binding governmental budget constraint may the civil servants have an incentive to conduct a CBA.

Keywords: Bureaucrats; Career concerns; CBA; Cognitive dissonance; Environmental policy; Norms (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D61 D73 H41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 20 pages
Date: 2017-02-07
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-env
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1)

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.transportportal.se/swopec/CTS2017-5.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:hhs:ctswps:2017_005

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in Working papers in Transport Economics from CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI) Centrum för Transportstudier (CTS), Teknikringen 10, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by CTS ().

 
Page updated 2024-07-23
Handle: RePEc:hhs:ctswps:2017_005