Corruption: The Role of Culture, Religion, Wealth and Governance
Marinilka Barros Kimbro
Seattle University - Albers School of Business and Economics; Seattle University
January 16, 2009
Drawing on macro and micro-economic theory, this paper expands the literature by examining the role of culture, values, religion, wealth, rule of law, governance and accounting on corruption. Using a panel of 75 countries, I find evidence that countries with Civil German law have better control of corruption and better governance, than countries with Civil French and Common Law legal traditions. I also find that the relationship of individualism and corruption is mediated by the positive effect of GNI suggesting that economically and institutionally mature countries with high levels of individualism tend to have higher corruption than countries with intermediate levels of individualism, indicating a non-monotonic, non-linear relationship between individualism, wealth and corruption. Even though there is evidence that Protestant countries are less corrupt than Catholic and Muslim countries, I find that this association is mediated by the level of institutional and regulatory development. Specifically, an efficient rule of law, moderate growth rates, as well as better governance & accounting is directly associated with countries that have controlled corruption, suggesting a causal relationship.
Keywords: Corruption, culture, religion, legal origin, governance, accounting, individualism
JEL Classification: M41, O11, O57, Z10
Date posted: March 12, 2009
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