Source: (2006) Journal of Conflict Resolution. 50(3): 383-408.

Truth revelation procedures are evaluated according to various normative criteria. The authors find the concepts of false conviction and false acquittal more adequate for such evaluation than the conformity with the rule of law and apply a useful classification of truth revelation procedures into incentive-based (ITRs) and evidence-based ones (ETRs). ITRs induce perpetrators and secret agents of the authoritarian regime to reveal the truth about their past, while ETRs rely exclusively on preserved evidence and victims’ testimonies. Using a simple decision-making model, the authors show that while both procedures are sensitive to the problem of falsified evidence, ITRs perform better with respect to revealing the identity of collaborators whose files were destroyed. Finally, they discuss the connection between ITRs and two modes of coming to terms with the past, endogenous and exogenous.