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Seminario CEDE - Michael Wintraub

  • SeminarioCEDE-2023-09-28-Michael-Weintraub.png
Lugar: Salón W-101
Fecha: 28 de Septiembre de 2023
Hora: De 12:30 pm hasta 1:50 pm

Low trust in state actors constrains state capacity, hindering growth and development. This paper studies how state actors can build public trust by improving the quality of their interactions with citizens. First, we propose a mechanism that links improved interactions to public trust—the belief that the state actor implements welfare-enhancing policies: improved interactions lower the expected burden of engaging with the state actor, promoting cooperation, motivating citizens to believe that cooperation is worthwhile, and increasing trust in the state actor. We then evaluate a randomized experiment in five cities in Colombia to empirically assess the relationship between the quality of interactions and public trust in the Colombian National Police. More specifically, our low-cost intervention retrains officers in procedural justice principles---such as fairness and respect---while intensifying police-citizen interactions. We find that the intervention improved willingness-to-pay for police services, public trust, and citizens' perceptions of fair treatment, suggesting that low-cost interventions can help build trust between police and communities. Our also results suggest that intensifying interactions alone is insufficient to improve public trust, but when combined with fair treatment, citizens' perceptions of the police improve. We also find a limited impact on officers' trust in citizens and their beliefs about citizens' public trust, implying that institutional culture change may require more profound efforts.

Universidad de los Andes