“In India, as elsewhere in the developing world, the old business of corruption is meeting a new rival: the Washingtonstyle business of persuasion.” So commented columnist Anand Giridharadas in the May 18, 2006, edition of the International Herald Tribune.

Lobbying and bribery are both time-honored ways to seek influence. The most important difference between them, according to economist Bård Harstad of Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, is not that one is legal and the...


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