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Abstract We study the operation of local governments (Panchayats) in rural Maharashtra, India, using a survey that we designed for this end. Elections are freely contested, fairly tallied, highly participatory, non-coerced, and lead to appointment of representative politicians. However, beneath...
Abstract Behavioral economics presents a “paternalistic” rationale for benevolent government intervention. This paper presents a model of public debt where voters have self-control problems and attempt to commit using illiquid assets. In equilibrium, government accumulates debt to respond to...
Abstract We develop a theory of fertility, distinguishing its intensive margin from its extensive margin. The deep parameters are identified using facts from the 1990 US Census: (i) fertility of mothers decreases with education; (ii) childlessness exhibits a U-shaped relationship with education;...
Abstract I study an economy where asymmetric information about the quality of capital endogenously determines liquidity. Liquid funds are key to relaxing financial constraints on investment and employment. These funds are obtained by selling capital or using it as collateral. Liquidity is...
Abstract The well-known double marginalization problem understates the inefficiencies arising from vertical relations in consumer search markets where consumers are uninformed about the wholesale prices charged by manufacturers to retailers. Consumer search provides a monopoly manufacturer with...
Abstract Ethnic favoritism is seen as antithetical to development. This paper provides credible quantification of the extent of ethnic favoritism using data on road building in Kenyan districts across the 1963–2011 period. Guided by a model, it then examines whether the transition in and out of...
Abstract Drug trade-related violence has escalated dramatically in Mexico since 2007, and recent years have also witnessed large-scale efforts to combat trafficking, spearheaded by Mexico's conservative PAN party. This study examines the direct and spillover effects of Mexican policy toward the...
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