Corruption is an aspect of poor governance which negatively affects a country’s economic development as well as the effective provision of public services in society. As the awareness of the detrimental effects of corruption on development has grown, strategies to fight it are now a priority in international development and policy circles. To date, however, few successes have resulted from the investment. In fact, in some countries corruption even seems to have become more entrenched in step with the efforts to curb it.
WFD commissioned this policy paper with a view to take stock of the theoretical and empirical approaches that have influenced the donor community’s thinking on how to diagnose and fight corruption and promote integrity, including the tools for assessing governance systems and assessing corruption. The paper outlines a policy framework discussing how ‘technical’ solutions that add pressure (such as for instance asset declarations for MPs) can be more effective when aligned with political incentives (such as civil society or media exposure that changes politicians’ calculations on transparency), thus politically maximising the effect of ‘formal’ control mechanisms.
The policy paper outlines several options, conditions, incentives and obstacles for future anti-corruption programming in the area of governance and parliamentary functioning.
This policy paper was written by Phil Mason, former DFID Senior Adviser on Corruption and a leading international researcher on anti-corruption policy making.