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EACES conference Paisley, September 6-8, 2012. Tatiana Karabchuk Laboratory for Comparative Social Research National Research University Higher School of Economics Income of the policemen: wages vs. informal payments. Introduction. Problem and motivation

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EACES conference

Paisley, September 6-8, 2012

Tatiana Karabchuk

Laboratory for Comparative Social Research

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Income of the policemen: wages vs. informal payments

  • Problem and motivation
  • Research goal and tasks
  • Literature review
  • Data and methodology
  • Preliminary results
  • Further research steps
1 problem and motivation
1. Problem and motivation
  • The analyzed material from the collected interviews shows that there is a definite problem with ineffective wage setting in the police system.
  • It is interesting that policy makers, public authorities and police officers speak about the same problem – low wage rates of policemen.
  • From broad literature and mass media we know that both conventional and unconventional economic activities take place in police. Do the mentioned low wages stimulate the growth of informal payments among policemen?
2 goals and tasks
2. Goals and tasks

The main aim of the research is to describe wage setting process and informal payment system in the police and to analyze the linkages between them.

The tasks are:

  • To trace the wage distribution among policemen and reveal the factors of it.
  • To disclose the impact of legal wage size on the attitudes toward the additional activities (informal payments).
3 literature review
3. Literature review

Two blocks of literature could be applied:

1) The first block contains papers on wage setting, wage factors, wage distribution as well as fair payments. This part of literature is much bigger and dates to 1950s

2) The second block comprises from all sort of informal economic behavior of policemen: conventional and unconventional. This part of literature is less thicker and dates to early 1960s

literature review
Literature review

Wage efficiency and rent seeking theories

Corruption and moonlighting behavior

Becker , Journal of Political Economy,(1968)

Beck, Paul J., and Michael W. Mahe, Economic Letters, (1986)

Bayley and Shearing, Law & Society Review, (1996)

Braguinsky, Contemporary Economic Policy, (1996)

Tanzi, Staff Papers - International Monetary Fund (1998)

Anon , Jakarta Post, (2004)

Ayling, and Grabosky, International Journal of Police Strategies and Management, (2006)

Ayling and Shearing, Criminology and Criminal Justice, (2008)

  • Bhagwati and Srinivasan, Journal of Political Economy, (1980).
  • Shapiro and Stiglitz, American Economic Review, (1984)
  • Appelbaum and Katz, The Economic Journal, (1987).
  • Brown, Industrial and Labour Relations Review, (1990)
  • Nickell and Nicolitsas, Labour Economics, (1997)
  • Campbell and Kamlani, (1997)
  • Ichino and Maggi, (2000)
  • Lazear, The American Economic Review, (2000)
  • Chang and Ching-chong Lai,The Scandinavian Journal of Economics, (2002)
3 literature review1
3. Literature review

Empirical research on police formal andinformal payments is not so rich. There are several country studies that demonstrates very interesting and different results.

  • Bayley, 1996 (The Police and Political Development in Europe)
  • Zvekic, 1998 (Countries in transition)
  • Darryl D'Monte, 2000 (Asian societies and corruption)
  • Beck & Ruth ,2002 (Attitudes to Corruption Amongst Russian PoliceOfficers and Trainees)
  • Tymoty Frye, 2002 (Police as an obstacle for business)
  • Shleifer & Treisman, 2004 (Normal Country)
  • Robertson, 2004 (Police reform in Russia)
  • Wallace and Latcheva, 2006 (Corruption, Trust in Public Institutions and the Informal Economy in Transition Countries of Central and Eastern Europe)
  • Ayling and Shearing, 2008 (Australia case of police corruption)
  • Gerber, Mendelson, 2008 (Russian case of publicabuse by police)
wage mechanism of police in russia
Wage mechanism of police in Russia
  • The wage of a policeman consists of:
    • Formal basic payment according to the position and ranking;
    • Benefit for number or years;
    • Benefit for scientific position and rank;
    • Additional payments (surplus) for good work, difficulties and etc.
  • The basis for the wage is an order that a person is taken for this position.
  • All the surpluses and benefits are given by the local cheefs.
4 data and methodology
4. Data and methodology


  • Series of interviews done in Bulgaria, Kazakhstan and Russia
  • Survey of policemen conducted in 2011 in Bulgaria, Russia and Kazakhstan (each country for 450-500 respondents).
methodology wage factors
Methodology : wage factors

Dependent variable:


Independent variables:

  • Gender
  • age
  • Education (3 dummies)
  • Position/rank (3 dummies)
  • Department (13 dummies)
  • Hours of work
  • Year of coming to the city
differences in wages
Differences in wages
  • The difference in wages between low level, middle level and high level positions is much higher in Russia, than in Bulgaria and Kazakhstan
  • Big differentiation between the departments, the lowest wages are in point duty police and road police and the highest are in self-security departments. This is true for all three countries.
6 preliminary conclusions
6. Preliminary conclusions
  • Themain determinants for high wage in police are age, position/rank, departments. Education does not have significant effect in Russia and Kazakhstan. No effects of working hours!
  • Almost no real changes in wages in Russia, growth of wages in Kazakhstan and decrease in real wags in Bulgaria
  • Disapprove telling about corruption in their office to the security department:

47,6%-??? 37,4% -??? 6,2% - ???

  • Opportunities for additional work havedecreased during the last 2 years (in Russia 35%, Kazakhstan -50%, Bulgaria – 70%)
6 next steps and questions
6. Next steps and questions
  • The assessment of the factors of attitudes towards additional activities in police
  • How to measure wage differences between policemen and other workers in budget sector and employees from non-budget sector?