DP6381 Parochial Politics: Ethnic Preferences and Politician Corruption
|Author(s):||Abhijit Banerjee, Rohini Pande|
|Publication Date:||July 2007|
|Keyword(s):||Corruption, Ethnic Voting, India|
|Programme Areas:||Public Economics, Development Economics|
|Link to this Page:||cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=6381|
This paper examines how increased voter ethnicization, defined as a greater preference for the party representing one's ethnic group, affects politician quality. If politics is characterized by incomplete policy commitment, then ethnicization reduces average winner quality for the pro-majority party with the opposite true for the minority party. The effect increases with greater numerical dominance of the majority (and so social homogeneity). Empirical evidence from a survey on politician corruption that we conducted in North India is remarkably consistent with our theoretical predictions.