Cooperating with the State: Evidence from Survey Experiments on Policing in Moscow

36 Pages Posted: 10 Jan 2013

See all articles by Noah Buckley

Noah Buckley

Columbia University - Department of Political Science; National Research University Higher School of Economics

Timothy Frye

Columbia University - Department of Political Science; National Research University Higher School of Economics

Scott Gehlbach

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Lauren McCarthy

University of Massachusetts Amherst

Date Written: January 9, 2013

Abstract

What factors affect citizens’ willingness to cooperate with the state? We explore this question through a study of citizens’ willingness to report crimes to the police, one of the quintessential forms of cooperation with the state apparatus. We develop a 'calculus of cooperation' that highlights three sets of factors that potentially influence citizens’ incentives to report a crime: benefits of cooperation received only if the crime is solved, benefits of cooperation received regardless of whether the crime is solved, and costs of cooperation. We evaluate the importance of these considerations using data from a set of survey experiments conducted in Moscow, Russia in December 2011. We find that citizens’ willingness to cooperate with the police is influenced by the nature and perpetrator of the crime but not by material rewards, appeals to civic duty, or the time required to report a crime. These results suggest skepticism about the ability of governments to easily engineer cooperation with the state.

Keywords: police, cooperation, state, survey experiments

JEL Classification: H11

Suggested Citation

Buckley, Noah and Frye, Timothy and Gehlbach, Scott and McCarthy, Lauren, Cooperating with the State: Evidence from Survey Experiments on Policing in Moscow (January 9, 2013). Higher School of Economics Research Paper No. 09/PS/2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2198174 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2198174

Noah Buckley (Contact Author)

Columbia University - Department of Political Science ( email )

7th Floor, International Affairs Bldg.
420 W. 118th Street
New York, NY 10027
United States

National Research University Higher School of Economics ( email )

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017
Russia

Timothy Frye

Columbia University - Department of Political Science ( email )

MC3320
420 West 118th Street
New York, NY 10027
United States
212-854-3646 (Phone)

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017
Russia

Scott Gehlbach

University of Wisconsin-Madison ( email )

1050 Bascom Mall
Madison, WI 53706
United States
608-263-2391 (Phone)

Lauren McCarthy

University of Massachusetts Amherst ( email )

Department of Operations and Information Managemen
Amherst, MA 01003
United States

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