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Newspaper Circulation and Local Government Efficiency

23 Pages Posted: 24 May 2011  

Christian Bruns

University of Goettingen (Gottingen) - Department of Economics

Oliver Himmler

University of Goettingen (Gottingen)

Date Written: June 2011

Abstract

In this paper, we examine the role of the newspaper market for a key aspect of political accountability: the efficient use of public funds by elected politicians. Newspapers are a major provider of the political information voters use to monitor their elected officials, especially at the local level. Thus, the incentives for politicians to reduce budgetary slack should be stronger in jurisdictions where the electorate is well informed by newspapers. Using panel data on the circulation of some 150 newspapers in Norwegian municipalities, we show that increases in local newspaper circulation are associated with higher levels of local government efficiency.

Keywords: Media, accountability, Norway, D72, H72, L82

Suggested Citation

Bruns, Christian and Himmler, Oliver, Newspaper Circulation and Local Government Efficiency (June 2011). Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Vol. 113, Issue 2, pp. 470-492, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1851184 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9442.2010.01633.x

Christian Bruns (Contact Author)

University of Goettingen (Gottingen) - Department of Economics ( email )

Platz der Goettinger Sieben 3
Goettingen, 37073
Germany

Oliver Himmler

University of Goettingen (Gottingen) ( email )

Platz der Gottinger Sieben 3
Gottingen, D-37073
Germany

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