Who Sees Corruption? The Bases of Mass Perceptions of Political Corruption in Latin America

Damarys Canache, Matthew Cawvey, Matthew Hayes, Jeffery J. Mondak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The capacity of citizens to see political corruption where it exists and to link such perceptions to evaluations of public officials constitutes an important test of political accountability. Although past research has established that perceived corruption influences political judgments, much less is known regarding the critical prefatory matter of who sees corruption. This article develops a multifaceted theoretical framework regarding the possible bases of perceived corruption. Experiential factors – personal experience and vicarious experience with bribery – mark the starting point for our account. We then incorporate psychological dispositions that may colour judgments about corruption and that may strengthen or weaken the links between experiences and perceptions. Expectations derived from this framework are tested in a series of multi-level models, with data from over 30,000 survey respondents from 17 nations and 84 regions in the Americas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-160
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Politics in Latin America
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2019


  • Big Five
  • bribery
  • corruption
  • personality
  • subnational effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


Dive into the research topics of 'Who Sees Corruption? The Bases of Mass Perceptions of Political Corruption in Latin America'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this