This study aims to explore the relationship between clientelistic economies and systemic corruption under the framework of Economic Norms Theory. Pointedly, it examines the evolution of contractual mortgage credit as a percentage of GDP (representing the growth of a non-self-enforcing contract market) compared to both actual and perceived levels of corruption in Brazil in order to assess whether Brazil is exemplary of a transitioning economy under the theory of Economic Norms. The hypothesis of this paper is two-fold. First, I expect that as mortgage credit as a percentage of GDP generally increases, actual corruption will decrease. Secondly, I expect that as perceptions of corruption worsen, actual corruption will improve. The results corroborated the hypothesis: as mortgage contracts occupy a larger percentage of national GDP, perceptions of corruption worsened while actual corruption has slightly improved. These findings suggest a shifting set of public values away from clientelistic norms and towards norms associated with contract-intensive economies.
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
College of Sciences
School of Politics, Security, and International Affairs
International and Global Studies
Neto, Nina B., "An Application of Economic Norms Theory to Brazilian Corruption" (2021). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 1014.