Fighting Corruption in Education: What Works and Who Benefits?
We investigate the efficiency and distributional consequences of a corruptionfighting initiative in Romania targeting the endemic fraud in a high-stakes high school exit exam, which introduced CCTV monitoring of the exam and credible punishment threats. We find that punishment coupled with monitoring was effective in reducing corruption. Estimating the heterogeneous impact for students of different ability, poverty status, and gender, we show that fighting corruption led to efficiency gains (ability predicts exam outcomes better) but also to a worrisome score gap increase between poor and non-poor students. Consequently, the poor students have reduced chances to enter an elite university.
JEL: I21, I24, K42
monitoring and punishment
Working Papers in Economics