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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, Clement Imbert, Santhosh Mathew and Rohini Pande
Additional contact information
Esther Duflo: MIT
Clement Imbert: University of Warwick
Santhosh Mathew: Bill and Melida Gates Foundation
Rohini Pande: Harvard University

The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) from University of Warwick, Department of Economics

Abstract: Can e-governance reforms improve government policy? By making information available on a realtime basis, information technologies may reduce the theft of public funds. We analyze a large field experiment and the nationwide scale-up of a reform to India's workfare program. Advance payments were replaced by "just-in-time" payments, triggered by e-invoicing, making it easier to detect misreporting. Leakages went down: program expenditures dropped by 24%, while employment slightly increased; there were fewer fake households in the official database; program officials' personal wealth fell by 10%. However, payment delays increased. The nationwide scale-up resulted in a persistent 19% reduction in program expenditure.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dev, nep-exp and nep-ict
Date: 2019
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https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/w ... werp_1224_imbert.pdf

Related works:
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
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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