Self-Selection into corruption: Evidence from the lab

Pablo Brassiolo, Ricardo Estrada, Gustavo Fajardo, Juan Vargas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


We study whether opportunities to extract rents in a job affect the type of individuals who are attracted to it in terms of their underlying integrity. We do so in a laboratory experiment in which participants choose between two contracts that involve different tasks. We experimentally introduce the possibility of graft in one of them and study the sorting of subjects across contracts based on an incentivized measure of honesty. We find that the corruptible contract changes the composition of subjects attracting the most dishonest individuals and repelling the most honest ones. In addition, we observe extensive graft when the opportunity is available. Our results have clear policy implications to curb corruption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)799-812
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Economic Behavior and Organization
StatePublished - Dec 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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