NBER

Ali Cheema

Department of Economics
Lahore University of Management Sciences
and Institute of Development and Economic Alternat

E-Mail: ali.cheema@cerp.org.pk

NBER Working Papers and Publications

May 2018Trust in State and Non-State Actors: Evidence from Dispute Resolution in Pakistan
with Daron Acemoglu, Asim I. Khwaja, James A. Robinson: w24611
Lack of trust in state institutions, often due to poor service provision, is a pervasive problem in many developing countries. If this increases reliance on non-state actors for crucial services, the resulting self-reinforcing cycle can further weaken the state. This paper examines whether such a cycle can be disrupted. We focus on dispute resolution in rural Punjab, Pakistan. We find that providing information about reduced delays in state courts leads to citizens reporting higher willingness to use state courts and to greater fund allocations to the state in two lab-in-the-field games designed to measure trust in state and non-state actors in a high-stakes setting. More interestingly, we find indirect effects on non-state actors. After receiving state positive information, respondents re...

Published: Daron Acemoglu & Ali Cheema & Asim I. Khwaja & James A. Robinson, 2020. "Trust in State and Nonstate Actors: Evidence from Dispute Resolution in Pakistan," Journal of Political Economy, vol 128(8), pages 3090-3147.

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