What is it about?

The aim of this paper is to evaluate the prevalence and distribution of the use of personal connections to circumvent formal procedures by soliciting favours for and from others, known as vruzki, and how this can be explained and tackled.

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Why is it important?

Reporting data from 2,005 face-to-face interviews conducted in late 2015 in Bulgaria, the finding is that 30 per cent of respondents had used vruzki in the 12 months prior to the survey, particularly when accessing medical services and finding a job. Estimating a logit model and then calculating the marginal effects, the population groups significantly more likely to have used vruzki are those whose norms, values and beliefs are not in symmetry with the formal laws and regulations, perceiving the penalties and detection risks as higher, those reporting their financial situation as very comfortable, and the highest income groups, but also younger people, the unemployed, and those living in larger households.


This paper unpacks for one of the first times how and why people use personal networks to gain access to goods and services and to circumvent formal processes.

Professor Colin C Williams
University of Sheffield

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Evaluating the Use of Personal Networks to Circumvent Formal Processes: A Case Study of Vruzki in Bulgaria, South East European Journal of Economics and Business, January 2017, De Gruyter, DOI: 10.1515/jeb-2017-0006.
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