Numerous studies show that female politicians on the whole are associated with less corruption than male ones. But Ugo Troiano and I were able to demonstrate the phenomenon with convincing evidence in a published study comparing male and female mayors in Brazil. We found that female mayors were not only less likely to engage in administrative irregularities and patronage, like … [Read more...] about Are Female Politicians More Honest than Male Politicians?
Latin American countries have a history of veering from left to right in economic affairs: from support for state-driven economic development to support for free markets. But a recent survey shows an upswing in ordinary citizens' enthusiasm for capitalism. And it begs the question as to why and how long-lasting the phenomenon might be. The recent findings are remarkable. … [Read more...] about The New Free-Market Fervor in Latin America
Patronage is among the least loved of political practices, often synonymous with malfeasance and incompetence. Civic and development organizations rail against it. Numerous studies show that merit-based career civil services, as opposed to discretionary ones, are associated with higher economic growth, lower corruption, and better bureaucratic performance. But patronage, the … [Read more...] about Does Political Patronage Necessarily Lead to Bad Hiring?
Corruption is a public enemy. Brazil's ongoing Lava Jato scandal is only the most recent prominent example of what can happen when government expenditures are undertaken with insufficient transparency and accountability. Pointing out a problem is one thing. Learning how to solve it—or at least contain it—is a different issue altogether, and one that raises a variety of … [Read more...] about Can Government and Civil Society Unite to Combat Corruption?
In mid-2015, tens of thousands of ordinary Guatemalans poured into the streets to protest against a multimillion-dollar corruption scheme at the highest levels of government and demand reform. By September, key ministers and advisers had been fired. The nation's president sat in jail. But today, two years after that euphoric demonstration of people power, little has changed in … [Read more...] about Guatemala: The Crisis of Rule of Law and a Weak Party System