New Economics Papers
on Collective Decision-Making
Issue of 2005‒10‒29
three papers chosen by

  1. Corruption and Political Competition By Richard Damania; Erkan Yalcin
  2. Conspicuous Public Goods and Leadership Selection By Colin Jennings; Hein Roelfsema
  3. Strategic Delegation of Environmental Policy Making By Hein Roelfsema

  1. By: Richard Damania (Adelaide University); Erkan Yalcin (Yeditepe University)
    Abstract: There is a growing evidence that political corruption is often closely associated with the rent seeking activities of special interest groups. This paper examines the nature of the interaction between the lobbying activities of special interest groups and the incidence of political corruption and determines whether electoral competition can eliminate political corruption. We obtain some striking results. Greater electoral competition serves to lessen policy distortions. However, this in turn stimulates more intense lobbying which increases the scope of corrupt behavior. It is shown that electoral competition merely serves to alter the type of corruption that eventuates, but cannot eliminate it.
    Keywords: Corruption, Lobbying, Political Competition
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2005–10–24
  2. By: Colin Jennings; Hein Roelfsema
    Abstract: If voters care for the relative supply of public goods compared to other jurisdictions, decentralized provision of public goods will be too high. Potentially, centralization internalizes the negative externalities from the production of these `conspicuous' public goods. However, in a model of strategic delegation of policy making, we show that in the decentralized policy making case the median voter may delegate to a politician who cares less for conspicuous public goods than she does herself. By doing so, she commits to lower public goods in the home and in the foreign country. In contrast, with centralization the median voter anticipates the reduction in public goods supply by delegating to a policy maker who cares more for public goods than she does herself. This last effect mitigates the expected benefits of centralization.
    Keywords: Conspicuous goods, strategic delegation, policy centralization
    JEL: H21 H23 H41 F36
    Date: 2004–01
  3. By: Hein Roelfsema
    Abstract: A common claim is that nations should cooperate in environmental policy making. However, there is little empirical support that noncooperative decision making results in too low environmental standards and taxes. We develop a theoretical model and show that if the median voter cares sufficiently for the environment, she has an incentive to delegate policy making to a politician that cares more for the environment than she does herself. By doing so, she mitigates the`race to the bottom' in environmental taxes. In contrast, if environmental policies are determined cooperatively with other countries, the median voter has an incentive to delegate policy making to a politician that cares less for the environment than she does herself, so as to free ride on international environmental agreements.
    Keywords: environmental policy, international policy coordination, strategic delegation.
    JEL: F12 F18 H77 Q2
    Date: 2004–01

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