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Beliefs About Public Spending and Efficient Expenditures in Public Procurement Officers (Public)

Project Beliefs About Public Spending and Efficient Expenditures in Public Procurement
Study ID sspp-2020-0015-v1
Study Title Beliefs About Public Spending and Efficient Expenditures in Public Procurement Officers
Authors Pablo Celhay, Paul Gertler, Marcelo Olivares, Raimundo Undurraga
Completion Time 15 Minutes
Close Date Dec. 31, 2021
Discipline Economics
Field Development Economics
Country Chile
Abstract
We design a series of information interventions aimed at highlighting the benefits and costs of efficiency in public spending, as well as reducing frictions in the search for low cost purchases, all with the ultimate objective of changing the institutional culture of efficiency within Public Services and thus reduce overspending in their public purchases. We implement different interventions depending on the level of responsibility within each treated service, i.e. whether the person is the Director of the PS (top-level or principal) or the person is a ``buyer'' (bottom-level or purchasing agent). The interventions consist of a combination of monthly reports with the performance of efficiency in public purchases at the buyer and service levels with new budget rules designed to punish next-year budget of services that incur in large overspending in the previous year. Central to our analysis is the role of beliefs about the benefits/costs of efficiency in public purchases, and the extent to which the top-bottom alignment of beliefs matters to increase the level of efficiency in public procurement.



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