Assessing Corruption: Expert Surveys Versus Household Surveys, Filling the Gap

Universite Montesquieu-Bordeauz Working Paper No. DT/160/2010

37 Pages Posted: 7 Nov 2010 Last revised: 19 Feb 2011

Date Written: November 5, 2010


Governance measurement is a relatively new source of entertainment for economists. The World Bank Institute paved the way in the late 1990`s with the now famous suite “Governance Matters”, I, II, III, IV… The little imagination of KKZ , regarding the choice of the title of their publications, hides the most important and innovative aggregated governance indicators.

Corruption focus could also claims World Bank parenthood since Transparency International birth was the fruit of a former partnership between James Wolfensohn and Peter Eigen.

With the prelude to the systematization of household surveys, a new way to measure governance and corruption emerged. Although the data resulting from household surveys provides interesting insights for institutional assessment, populations’ opinions also introduce new pitfalls.

This study aims to investigate the gap between expert and household surveys regarding the measurement of corruption. Indeed, experts and populations barely agree on their estimations of the extent of corruption. I suggest that freedom of the press, culture, permissiveness and leadership approval may cover one’s track.

Keywords: Corruption, Governance, Corruption Perception Index, CPI, Transparency International, Corruption Measurement, Perception Indicators, Expert Surveys, Household Surveys, Press Freedom, Freedom House

JEL Classification: O11, O17, O19

Suggested Citation

Roca, Thomas, Assessing Corruption: Expert Surveys Versus Household Surveys, Filling the Gap (November 5, 2010). Universite Montesquieu-Bordeauz Working Paper No. DT/160/2010, Available at SSRN: or

Thomas Roca (Contact Author)

Data-Pop Alliance ( email )

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