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E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India

Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, Clément Imbert, Santhosh Mathew and Rohini Pande

No 22803, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: In collaboration with the Government of Bihar, India, we conducted a large-scale experiment to evaluate whether transparency in fiscal transfer systems can increase accountability and reduce corruption in the implementation of a workfare program. The reforms introduced electronic fund-flow, cut out administrative tiers, and switched the basis of transfer amounts from forecasts to documented expenditures. Treatment reduced leakages along three measures: expenditures and hours claimed dropped while an independent household survey found no impact on actual employment and wages received; a matching exercise reveals a reduction in fake households on payrolls; and local program officials’ self-reported median personal assets fell.

JEL-codes: H11 O2 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp
Note: DEV
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (12) Track citations by RSS feed

Published as Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo & Clément Imbert & Santhosh Mathew & Rohini Pande, 2020. "E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, vol 12(4), pages 39-72.

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Related works:
Journal Article: E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India (2020) Downloads
Working Paper: E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India (2019) Downloads
Working Paper: E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: E-Governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: E-governance, Accountability, and Leakage in Public Programs: Experimental Evidence from a Financial Management Reform in India (2016) Downloads
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