Myths of Corruption Prevention. What is (Not) Good With a Weberian Bureaucracy?
41 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2011 Last revised: 11 Aug 2011
Date Written: 2011
It is often stated that the public sector should be separated from politics and that an isolated bureaucracy, in this sense, is less prone to corruption. The cornerstone of such propositions is that the activities of politicians and administrators should be separated so that politicians dominate policy making, while administrators dominate implementation. This paper investigates if the organizational characteristics aimed at isolating bureaucrats from politicians are correlated with lower levels of corruption in countries across the world. Using a unique dataset measuring features of the public sector administration in 97 countries, we show that there is no empirical association between four standard indicators of an isolated bureaucracy and low corruption.
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