Do policy councils curb corruption?
Palavras-chave:Corruption, Policy Councils, Social Accountability, Public Governance, Civil Society
This paper explores the role of societal accountability on corruption by addressing the question of whether a better performance of policy councils have a positive effect on preventing cases of corruption. The dataset is made of a sample of 1,223 Brazilian municipalities, randomly selected by a national public audit anticorruption program, which took place from 2006 to 2015 and whose independent audit reports are officially released and publicly available. The analysis deployed different estimation techniques, such as regression, semiparametric matching, and instrumental variables, which follow a formal framework for causal inference. A significant effect of social accountability through policy councils on deterring corruption is observed. These results are consistent with the theoretical frameworks and empirical findings about the positive effects of good governance institutions on curbing corruption and contribute to a better design of democratic anticorruption policies.