Mauro (1995) Does NOT Show That Corruption Slows Growth

One of the most influential and widely cited economics articles on corruption is Paolo Mauro’s 1995 paper, “Corruption and Growth,” published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics (Vol. 110, No. 3, pp. 681-712). It has become a standard citation for the proposition that corruption is lowers investment, and consequently lowers economic growth. The paper is important because it sparked close to 20 years (and counting) of increasingly sophisticated research on the economic effects of corruption. Furthermore, it leant critical academic support to the emerging anticorruption movement in both civil society and international organizations like the World Bank and IMF. And for those reasons alone, I think one could make a strong case that this paper has had a positive impact on the world.

Continue reading