Since the mid-1990s, the Indian state of Gujarat has had a fairly robust set of environmental regulations on its books. But pollution from industrial plants in Gujarat remains ubiquitous, and it’s related to another common problem: corruption.

Four US-based economists, in association with MIT’s Poverty Action Lab, collaborated with the Gujarat Pollution Control Board on a two-year study that explored those linked issues. Their goal, in particular, was to see if altering the...

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