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Bianca Willert

Essays on the economics of slavery and serfdom

Universität Rostock, 2021

Abstract: This dissertation investigates modern slavery: Essay 1 presents a theoretical matching model of forced labor. It addresses how oppressors recruit their victims and how certain mechanisms affect the extent of exploitation. Essay 2 presents a theoretical model where slaveholders can buy protection from punishment by bribing corrupt inspectors. Bribery is modelled via Nash bargaining. Multiple equilibria and hysteresis are possible. Essay 3 studies empirically how political decision-making, institutional environment and exploitation are interlinked by creating a novel dataset.

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