Traveling agents : political change and bureaucratic turnover in India
Iyer, Lakshmi and Mani, Anandi (2007) Traveling agents : political change and bureaucratic turnover in India. Working Paper. Coventry: Department of Economics, University of Warwick.
Official URL: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/resear...
Political principals face high-powered electoral pressures while bureaucrat-agents face longer
term, low-powered incentives. Given constitutional constraints, what "carrots and sticks" do
politicians employ to control bureaucrats and how do bureaucrats respond to such incentives?
We use a simple career concerns framework and a unique dataset from the Indian Administrative Service to address these issues. State level politicians (Chief Ministers) exert control over
bureaucrats when they assume office, through a novel mechanism of reassignment (transfers)
to new jobs. Transfers are less likely if district politicians belong to the same party as the Chief
Minister, i.e. he appears to treat local politicians and bureaucrats as substitutes. We use a
framework where bureaucrats differ in their willingness to invest in job expertise or political
loyalty. Consistent with this framework, we find in our data that more able bureaucrats and
those with greater job-specific experience are less likely to be reassigned when a new politician
assumes office. In accordance with politicians district reassignment patterns, we do not find robust evidence of any negative impact of such politically-induced transfers on development
and policy outcomes at the district level.
|Item Type:||Working or Discussion Paper (Working Paper)|
|Subjects:||H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
J Political Science > JS Local government Municipal government
|Divisions:||Faculty of Social Sciences > Economics|
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Bureaucracy -- India, Civil service -- India, India -- Politics and government|
|Publisher:||Department of Economics, University of Warwick|
|Place of Publication:||Coventry|
|Official Date:||November 2007|
|Number of Pages:||39|
|Status:||Not Peer Reviewed|
|Access rights to Published version:||Open Access|
Acemoglu, D., and Robinson, J. (2006). The economic origins of dictatorship and democracy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
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