Institut for Statskundskab

Matt W. Loftis

Deliberate Indiscretion? How Political Corruption Encourages Discretionary Policy Making

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

This article reports the first empirical evidence that politicians delegate to trusted bureaucrats to diminish political responsibility for policy. Political science has been perennially concerned with why political leaders delegate authority to bureaucrats, but this work’s focus on advanced democracies has overlooked how corruption and political influence over bureaucrats can turn delegation into a means of obfuscating responsibility. Using a measure that differentiates political corruption from corruption at lower levels of government and a new data set of policy making on more than 600 European Commission directives in the 10 former communist European Union (EU) member states, I show that political-level corruption is associated with increased delegation to bureaucrats. This relationship between political corruption and bureaucratic discretion is conditional upon the political independence of the bureaucracy, such that politicians engaged in corruption delegate more to reduce clarity of responsibility only when they possess informal means to influence bureaucrats.
TidsskriftComparative Political Studies
Sider (fra-til)728-758
Antal sider31
StatusUdgivet - 2015

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