e-mail (@giga-hamburg.de): malte.lierl

I’m an experimental political economist working on problems of governance and development. Much of my research investigates how the behavior of public decision makers depends on the social context in which they operate. For example, are local politicians less willing to embezzle public funds if doing so can affect their social reputations? How do formal institutions, such as democratic elections, affect the social norms and expectations by which citizens evaluate public decision makers? How can policy interventions transform the social context of public decision-making, in order to improve the functioning of public institutions and democratic processes in developing countries?

In addition to doing fundamental research, I am passionate about translating research into policy innovation. This has led to productive and inspiring collaborations with policy makers. Since 2013, I have been the principal investigator for a program of policy experiments on municipal governance in Burkina Faso (Récherche expérimentale sur la gouverance locale au Burkina Faso, or REGLAB) that tests novel approaches to municipal government accountability. Carried out in collaboration with the government of Burkina Faso and the World Bank, these experiments apply behavioral insights to improve democratic governance and public accountability at the municipal level.