Impact of Elite Capture on the Provision of Public Services

  • Blog Post Date 31 March, 2018
  • IGC Research on India
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Tarun Jain

Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad

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Joseph Vecci

University of Gothenburg

The Bihar Rural Livelihoods Project commonly called JEEViKA, is a community-driven poverty reduction programme with the key aim of improving the social and economic empowerment of the rural poor. However, the community participatory design can also allow local leaders to use their influence to expropriate resources to the detriment of the rest of the community, a phenomenon often called elite capture. To investigate the dynamics of elite capture, this project examines the differences in behaviour of male and female leaders in JEEViKA and non-JEEViKA villages using an artefactual field experiment. It finds that female leaders are more deceptive in JEEViKA villages as compared to non-JEEViKA villages. It also finds that participants from JEEViKA villages are more trusting, especially women who are specifically targeted by the programme.

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