April 2007 (#76)


In this update:

  • Australian Government Releases New Policy Requiring Anti-Corruption Efforts by Aid Recipients
  • New Senior Advisor to Transparency International in the Asia Pacific
  • Transparency International Global Corruption Barometer 2006
  • Corruption Prevention Awards 2007
  • Australasian Study of Parliament Group (ASPG) Project – Victoria
  • Anti-Corruption Initiative for Asia and the Pacific
  • The World Bank Group Work in Governance and Anti-Corruption
  • Ethics World Website
  • The UK Anti-Corruption Forum
  • RECOMMENDED READING
  • COMING EVENTS

Australian Government Releases New Policy Requiring Anti-Corruption Efforts by Aid Recipients

TI Australia welcomes the fresh affirmation by the government of the link between corruption and poverty. The policy statement was made by Alexander Downer on 30 March 2007. Details of the new policy, Tackling Corruption for Growth and Development, can be found by clicking on the link above. The AusAID website says that �Australia is expanding its efforts to help partner countries in the Asia Pacific region combat corruption�. It notes that the policy will ��guide Australia’s support for partner countries as they strive to make the reforms needed to improve their governance and tackle corruption�.

New Senior Advisor to Transparency International in the Asia Pacific

TI Australia welcomes the recent appointment of Mr Arun Dugaal as a Senior Advisor to TI in the Asia Pacific. Mr. Arun Dugaal, a member of TI India, served as Vice Chair of TI India until December 2006. He was actively involved in projects including the �Integrity Pact� and took a lead in introducing the �Journalism Award Program� in India. Mr Arun Dugaal�s new role involves advising TI National Chapters, TI Chapters in Formation, TI Contacts and TI partners in the Asia Pacific region on issues relating to:

  • Journalism Award: he will help to promote and support the establishment and financing of national and/or regional journalism awards, and advise TI NCs or TI-S on their implementation and ongoing operation.
  • Banking and Finance: he will increase TI capacity in, and understanding of governance issues and corruption prevention in the banking sector, and effectively approach anti-corruption work in this sector. His input may consist in advising and/or helping TI NCs or TI-S participate in international banking events to raise anti-corruption awareness, define a sector specific advocacy strategy, formulate a policy position, or develop anti-corruption systems and tools, etc. He will work with TI-S to assist in banking initiatives on Asset Recovery and Project Finance.
  • Integrity Pact: He will assist TI NC�s and TI-S in implementation/ refinement of Integrity Pact progress.

Mr. Arun Dugaal�s past experiences in the private sector and banking services and his experience in working with TI India are great assets.

Transparency International Global Corruption Barometer 2006

Released in December 2006, the Global Corruption Barometer 2006 gives more information on the experience of bribery than ever before, and includes a question about the public�s view of government anti-corruption efforts. The resounding conclusion of the GCB is that millions of people around the world come face-to-face with corruption in their daily lives, and urgently want their government to take action to stop it. The 2006 Barometer, a public opinion survey conducted for Transparency International by Gallup International, looks at the extent of corruption through the eyes of ordinary citizens around the world. It explores the issue of petty bribery in greater depth than ever before, highlighting people�s personal experience of bribery, and identifying the sectors most affected by corruption, its frequency, and how much people must pay.

Corruption Prevention Awards 2007

The Corruption Prevention Network (CPN) shares information and experiences in dealing with the challenges of corruption prevention. Each year a particular aspect of corruption prevention is designated as the focus for Awards for that year. The 2007 CPN Awards focus is on having a good mix of tools and techniques to ensure that the organisation�s fraud control and corruption prevention strategy is effective. Further information is available on the CPN website. Nominations must be lodged by close of business Friday 13 July 2007.

Australasian Study of Parliament Group (ASPG) Project – Victoria

The Australasian Study of Parliament Group (ASPG) has released a paper expressing their concern at the unacceptable state of government accountability to Parliament and the broader public in Victoria. They are asking that Members of Parliament and prospective Members of Parliament, along with Parties seeking representation in the Parliament of Victoria, support adoption and implementation of the assumptions, proposed actions and reforms listed in a Charter within the life of the Parliament 2006-2010. They also invite comment from the public to the Charter.

Anti-Corruption Initiative for Asia and the Pacific

Chasing Stolen Assets in the Asia Pacific: a new study of the need and prospects for Mutual Assistance between the countries in the Asia Pacific region to track down corrupt activity and pursue ill gotten gains has been produced under a new initiative of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) working with the OECD.

The World Bank Group Work in Governance and Anti-Corruption

On 20 March 2007, the World Bank’s Board of Directors unanimously approved a new Governance and Anticorruption Strategy for the World Bank Group. The strategy paper – originally presented to the Development Committee at the Bank’s 2006 Annual Meetings in Singapore – was recently revised to take into account main messages resulting from multi-stakeholder consultations that the Bank held between November 2006 and January 2007 with over 3,200 representatives from government, civil society, donor agencies, business, parliaments and other interested parties through 47 country consultations, 4 meetings with global audiences, and web-based feedback.

Ethics World Website

The Ethics World website contains papers on a range of interesting topics including:

  •  Recovering Stolen Assets
  • Income and Disclosure Requirements for Public Officials
  •  Learning from Experience: the Dutch Example
  •  A new UK White Paper (DFID) with focus on anti-corruption as a way to reduce poverty
  •  A practical guide to reducing corruption in privatizations

Ethics World Website

The UK Anti-Corruption Forum

The Anti-Corruption Forum is an alliance of UK business associations, professional institutions, civil society organisations and companies with interests in the domestic and international infrastructure, construction and engineering sectors. The stated purpose of the Forum is �to promote industry-led actions which can help to eliminate corruption. The members of the Forum believe that corruption can only be eliminated if governments, banks, business and professional associations, and companies working in these sectors co-operate in the development and implementation of effective anti-corruption actions.�

RECOMMENDED READING

‘Corruption by Design?’ A comparative study of Singapore, Hong Kong and mainland China by Su Jing, Crawford School of Economics and Government
Corruption exists in every society, but the extent of corruption varies enormously among countries. It is puzzling to see some countries are more successful than others, even if they have similar geographic, cultural and historical background. How the transformation from widespread corruption to clean government has been accomplished is thus an intriguing research question and practical policy problem. Manion (2004) considers the problem of anticorruption reform, in comparative case study of anticorruption reform in mainland China and Hong Kong. This paper examines Manion�s theory with the anticorruption experience of another member of �Greater China� � Singapore. It finds that whereas Singapore�s experience supports Manion�s theory about the importance of independent, powerful and well-financed anticorruption agency, a comprehensive anticorruption strategy and the existence of rule of law, it does not prove that a political system allowing high degree of political freedom is necessary to successful anticorruption reform.

‘The Institutional Economics of Corruption and Reform – Theory, Evidence and Policy’ by Prof. Dr. Johann Graf Lambsdorff
Corruption has been a feature of public institutions for centuries yet only relatively recently has it been made the subject of sustained scientific analysis. Lambsdorff shows how insights from institutional economics can be used to develop a better understanding of why corruption occurs and the best policies to combat it. He argues that rather than being deterred by penalties, corrupt actors are more influenced by other factors such as the opportunism of their criminal counterparts and the danger of acquiring an unreliable reputation. This suggests a novel strategy for fighting corruption similar to the invisible hand that governs competitive markets. This strategy – the �invisible foot� – shows that the unreliability of corrupt counterparts induces honesty and good governance even in the absence of good intentions. Combining theoretical research with state-of-the-art empirical investigations, this book will be an invaluable resource for researchers and policy-makers concerned with anti-corruption reform.

COMING EVENTS

13 April 2007: Risky Business – the Trade, Migration and Development Research Centre in collaboration with Transparency International (WA) is holding a seminar on Friday 13 April. You are cordially invited to attend this event. For further information click on the underlined link or contact Ms Joanne Stenhouse at jstenhou@biz.uwa.edu.au or by telephone to 08 6488 3415.

3-4 May 2007: 5th Annual Anti-Corruption Conference – The awakening giant of anti-corruption enforcement: to be held in Paris, France. Bookings and further information are available online.

23-26 October 2007: inaugural Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption (APSAC) Conference to be held in Sydney (conference days are 24-25 October). The APSAC Conference is being held by the New South Wales Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), the Queensland Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) and the Western Australia Corruption and Crime Commission (CCC). TI Australia is a conference sponsor.