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腐败!腐败!讨厌的腐败!  

2009-04-03 16:45:03|  分类: 默认分类 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Corruption as an Impediment toEconomic Growth

Whenwe studied long-run economic growth and development in ec 10 a few weeks ago, we discussed howcorruption is one of the factors holding back many poor countries. One personstudying this issue is Ben Olken, a junior fellow at Harvard and recentgraduate of the Harvard PhD program. Here is a summary of his work in Indonesia,excerpted from a recentarticle in The Economist:

几周前,我们研究了长期经济增长和发展,我们讨论了:在许多穷国,腐败是如何妨碍发展的。其中有一个同学研究了这个问题。他在印尼的工作,有一个总结,在《经济学家》的一篇文章里,有个节录,讲的就是他:

Someof the World Bank money allocated to village infrastructure ends up greasingpalms not smoothing gravel. But how much? In a remarkable study backed by thebank, Ben Olken, of Harvard University, dug deep intothe sand and stone to find out. He reports the gap between what a villageclaims it spent on a road, and what he and his engineers reckon the road reallycost. They left little to guesswork. To discover prices and wages, they surveyedquarries, labourers, truckdrivers and suppliers. To get a fix on quantities,they dug holes in the roads, taking a sample of the material that had gone intotheir construction. And then they built their own “test roads”, to find outwhat it cost to do the job properly.
世界银行用于村庄基础设施的钱,有一些变成了“小费”(greasingpalms),而没有变成光滑的石子。但是,有多少呢?世行资助的一个很不错的研究中,这位老兄,深深地挖开了沙石,想找到答案。村庄所说的花在路上的钱,和他与工程师们所认为的真实成本,之间存在差距。他们可不是拍脑袋说的。为了弄清价格和工资,他们调查了采石厂、劳工、卡车司机和供应商。为了落实数量,他们在路上打洞,取了实际的样本,用于模拟建设。接着,他们照样子建了自己的“实验路”,这样,就可以知道这样的路到底会花多少钱了。


Mr Olken calculates that on average 28% of reportedspending went missing, mostly because roadbuilders skimped on materials. (Notall of the gap can be put down to venality, though: some of the gravel, forexample, was probably worn away.) Thanks to his measure of corruption, Mr Olkencan weigh up different strategies to fight it.
他算了一下:平均有28%的花费,不见了踪影,主要原因是道路建筑商偷工减料(当然,并不是所有的差值,都可以归因为腐败:譬如,有一些砂石可能会有损耗。)根据所算出的腐败,他可以估量出不同的策略来对付它。


He reaches an unfashionable conclusion. The bankputs great store by “empowering” the poor to keep their officials honest. In Indonesia,villages must hold public hearings before they get the second and third slicesof their money. In a random sample of villages, Mr Olken tried to stir up a bitof Tocquevillean spirit (“Town meetings are to liberty what primary schools areto science...they teach men how to use and how to enjoy it”) by sending outhundreds of invitations to villagers to attend the public hearings. His effortsraised attendance, but this had little measurable effect on corruption.

他所得出的结论,不那么时兴。银行着重“武装”穷人,以迫使官员诚实。在印尼,在拿到第二拨钱和第三拨钱之前,村庄都要开公开听证会。他随机地找了一个村庄,给村民们发了数百份的邀请,让他们来参加公开听证会,试图激发起一种叫“托克维尔精神”的东西(“城镇会议之与自由,犹初级学校之与科学……教之以用法,教之于乐法。”:Town meetings are to liberty what primary schools are to science…theyteach men how to use and how to enjoy it)。他的工作提高了与会人数,但是,对腐败却无可观的作用。

 


For all its romantic appeal, monitoring byvillagers suffers from a free-rider problem. If your neighbour keeps a beadyeye on road spending, you can benefit from his vigilance without making aneffort yourself. Why, then, should you bother? But by the same logic, whyshould he?

这个呼吁真是很罗曼蒂克,让村民来监督,面临着“搭便车”的问题。如果邻居时刻提防(keep a beady eye on)道路花费,那么,你就不需付出努力,而可以从他的警惕中得益了。那么,你何苦费这个力气呢?但是,同理,他何苦呢?


Mr Olken puts his faith in a less fashionable ally:auditors. A group of villages, chosen at random, were told that they would beaudited at the end of the project. This threat reduced missing expenditures byabout eight percentage points, to 20% or so.

他又相信一个更不时兴的盟友:审计师。随机选出一堆村庄,告诉它们:项目结束之后,会来审计的。这个威胁使得灭失的花费降低了8%20%左右。

腐败!腐败!讨厌的腐败! - 曼昆 - N·格里高利·曼昆的博客

 

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