Gender and bureaucratic corruption: evidence from two countries
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Citation (published version)Francesco Decarolis, Raymond Fisman, Paolo Pinotti, Silvia Vannutelli, Yongxiang Wang. "Gender and Bureaucratic Corruption: Evidence from Two Countries." The Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, https://doi.org/10.1093/jleo/ewab041
We examine the correlation between gender and bureaucratic corruption using two distinct datasets, from Italy and from China. In each case, we find that women are far less likely to be investigated for corruption than men. In our Italian data, female procurement officials are 22% less likely than men to be investigated for corruption by enforcement authorities; in China, female prefectural leaders are 81% less likely to be arrested for corruption than men. While these represent correlations (rather than definitive causal effects), both are very robust relationships, which survive the inclusion of fine-grained individual and geographic controls, and based on Oster’s (2019. “Unobservable Selection and Coefficient Stability: Theory and Evidence,” 37 Journal of Business & Economic Statistics 187–204.) test unlikely to be driven by unobservables. Using data from a survey of Italian procurement officials, we present tentative evidence on mechanism: the gender gap is partly due to women acting more “defensively” in administering their duties.