Jati, local public goods and village governence: private actions and public outcomes

Vol: 
2017/01
Author name: 
Raghbendra Jha
Hari K. Nagarajan
Anirudh Tagat
Year: 
2017
Month: 
March
Abstract: 

This paper purports to understand whether voting along narrow parochial lines in socially and ethnically fragmented societies has measurable gains. Using data from rural India, we establish that identity based voting, driven by membership in social and informal networks, will lead to enhanced participation in welfare programs, which in turn leads to increased consumption growth. We also show that reducing agency costs does not necessarily remove the need for identity‐based voting, and that such voting behaviour is a means for engaging in capture of public and private benefits by these groups. Some policy recommendations are also advanced.

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