Targeting Cyclone Relief within the Village: Kinship and Capture

Working paper available upon request.



We examine corruption during a post-cyclone period in Bangladesh. After Cyclone Aila in 2009, the prime minister of Bangladesh announced a special assistance of 20,000 Taka ($300) to rebuild houses of affected households. We estimate the extent of corruption in this disaster relief and examine the factors that might influence the missing funds meant to be distributed to households.

We pay attention to the role of different networks in getting relief grants and associated corruption. Our results indicate missing grant and bribery are considerably less in the post-Aila house building grant- contrary to the general level of the graft in Bangladesh.

Results suggest that individuals’ social (political) networks play an important role in both receiving disaster relief and reporting corruption. Our research has important implications for policymakers and serves as a guide in further efforts to impede corruption in disaster relief.