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Anticorruption Policies Revisited. Global Trends and European Responses to the Challenge of Corruption

Final Report Summary - ANTICORRP (Anticorruption Policies Revisited. Global Trends and European Responses to the Challenge of Corruption)

Executive Summary:
Executive summary

ANTICORRP was a large-scale research programme funded by the European Commission’s Seventh Framework Programme. The programme started in March 2012 and ended in February 2017. The full name is Anticorruption Policies Revisited: Global Trends and European Responses to the Challenges of Corruption. Its central objective was to investigate factors that promote or hinder the development of effective anti-corruption policies. The programme consisted of twenty research groups in fifteen EU countries. It was interdisciplinary in nature, and brought together researchers from anthropology, criminology, economics, gender studies, history, law, political science, public policy and public administration. The programme was organised into four thematic pillars, which include 11 substantive work packages. The programme was led by the Quality of Government (QoG)institute (Scientific Coordinator: Monika Bauhr and Programme Manager Andreas Bågenholm). Furthermore, the programme had one academic leader in charge of each pillar: professor Donatella Della Porta and Alberto Vannucci (pillar 1), associate professor Monika Bauhr (pillar 2), professor Alena Ledeneva (pillar 3) and professor Alina Mungiu Pippidi (pillar 4).

The programme has resulted in a vast number of both academic and policy publications and has served as a key resource for professionals working on anti-corruption issues, academics and policy-makers alike. The ANTICORRP programme was unprecedented in its scale and the variety of approaches used to investigate corruption and anti-corruption policies. As such, much of the research that it pioneered was ground- breaking and significantly advanced our knowledge in this field. Furthermore, the programme contributed towards generating a stronger anticorruption research community in Europe, forging new collaboration patterns that will most likely influence corruption research for many years to come. Many of the researchers involved in the programme continue to work on these issues. Their work contributes to a better-informed academic debate surrounding the control of corruption and, ultimately, to better evidence-based anti-corruption policies.

While being far from exhaustive, this report summarizes some of the programme’s most important output. In particular, the programme shows that a number of factors may contribute towards containing corruption, including transparency and media freedom, elections, the empowering of women, meritocratic recruitment, bureaucratic autonomy (i.e. a non-politicized bureaucracy), professional audit institutions, civic engagement and mobilization, e-citizenship, judicial independence and trade openness. Our findings also show the importance of understanding both the varieties of corruption and informal institutions and practices, and in particular the ways in which corruption is used in efforts to seek solutions to the problems that citizens face, in order to understand the effectiveness of anticorruption reforms. This context sensitive understanding of corruption has been developed through a number of historically and anthropologically grounded case studies as well as a range of studies on the contingencies of the effectiveness of anticorruption reforms. Furthermore, legal imports, the enactment of specific laws and institutions as well as international interventions and conditionality have a very limited impact if domestic agency is lacking, including a critical mass demanding good governance. The programme has also contributed to a number of large-scale publicly available data sources on corruption and anticorruption.

What comes across from the pages of the [Final Academic] Report is the professionalism of the whole enterprise and of course the list of publications that closes it supplies excellent evidence of the productivity of the project. I was very pleased I was associated with this important and productive project and I want to express the wish its findings and conclusions to have a serious impact in actual political practices in Europe and the world beyond.

Professor Paschalis Kitromilides
University of Athens

Successful anti-corruption reforms typically founder because corruption is not always, or even usually, punished by voters; because the standard anti-corruption tools often have no effect; and because the effects of corruption on the economic well-being of citizens are often hard to detect. ANTICORRP made spectacular contributions to our understanding of each of these fundamental issues, laying the groundwork for the design of more efficacious interventions to reduce corruption in the future.

Phil Keefer
Principal Economic Advisor at the
Inter-American Development Bank

The ANTICORRP project is offering one of the widest and deepest scientific analysis of the corruption phenomenon in political and administrative systems. It is probably the first time that so many case studies and so many dimensions of corruption are studied extensively by an international team, on a comparative basis and through common methodological tools. It explores avenues which had never been opened such as the issue of "Gender and Corruption" and sheds new light and new understanding on the forms, magnitude and impact of corruption. An indispensable companion for all those wishing not only to understand this universal criminal behaviour but also identify instruments and policies capable to fight and possibly erase this pervasive and lethal illness.
Professor Yves Mény
Former President of the
European University Institute

ANTICORRP has given us the most complete multidisciplinary perspective on corruption and related issues that has been assembled to date. It has also provided the most useful conception of anti-corruption progress (In the form of the Virtuous Cycles cases and analysis) and an excellent new Index of Public Integrity. Sincere thanks to all who have contributed so much and so well.

Professor Michael Johnston
Colgate University

Project Context and Objectives:
A summary description of project context and objectives

ANTICORRP was a large-scale research programme funded by the European Commission’s Seventh Framework Programme. The programme started in March 2012 and ended in February 2017. The full name is Anticorruption Policies Revisited: Global Trends and European Responses to the Challenges of Corruption. Its central objective was to investigate factors that promote or hinder the development of effective anti-corruption policies. The programme consisted of twenty research groups in fifteen EU countries. It was interdisciplinary in nature, and brought together researchers from anthropology, criminology, economics, gender studies, history, law, political science, public policy and public administration. The programme was organised into four thematic pillars, which include 11 substantive work packages. The programme was led by the Quality of Government (QoG) institute. Associate Professor Monika Bauhr has served as the Scientific Coordinator and Dr Andreas Bågenholm as the programme manager. Furthermore, the programme had one academic leader in charge of each pillar: professor Donatella Della Porta and Alberto Vannucci (pillar 1), associate professor Monika Bauhr (pillar 2), professor Alena Ledeneva (pillar 3) and professor Alina Mungiu Pippidi (pillar 4).

The programme has resulted in a vast number of both academic and policy publications and has served as a key resource for professionals working on anti-corruption issues, academics and policy-makers alike. The ANTICORRP programme was unprecedented in its scale and the variety of approaches used to investigate corruption and anti-corruption policies. As such, much of the research that it pioneered was ground-breaking and significantly advanced our knowledge in this field. Furthermore, the programme contributed to generating a stronger anticorruption research community in Europe, forging new collaboration patterns that will most likely influence research results for many years to come. Many of the researchers involved in the programme continue to work on these issues. Their work contributes to a better-informed academic debate surrounding the control of corruption and, ultimately, to better evidence-based anti-corruption policies.
The programme advanced knowledge on factors that promote or hinder the development of effective anti-corruption policies, and examined what the causes of corruption are, how we can conceptualize, measure and analyse corruption, what the impact of corruption on societies is and how policy responses can be tailored to deal effectively with this phenomenon. Special emphasis was laid on the agency of different state and non-state actors to contribute to the fight against corruption.
The specific objective of the ANTICORRP was to:
1) Propose an encompassing yet precise definition of corruption that clearly differentiates corrupt actions from other types of criminal or ethically problematic actions.
2) Create a panel data-set of indicators allowing the tracing of corruption levels over time by country and region through identifying new indicators documented in the project with established, perception-based ones.
3) Engage in historical and contemporary case study research and qualitative comparisons across cases to explain why countries reach different equilibria with regard to government accountability and the control of corruption.
4) Explain governance regime change as documented by our time series through global models developed through quantitative comparative analysis.
5) Conduct an extensive survey on monitoring corruption and quality of governance that documents the diversity of contemporary governance landscapes, regulatory frames and anti-corruption strategies in the EU and in countries neighbouring the EU.
6) Document the impact and cost of corruption through a variety of case studies across the globe.
7) Provide the first systematic study of the impact of EU funds on the governance of recipient countries.
8) Investigate the success or failure of a significant number of anti-corruption ‘leaders’ in relation to their empowering contexts.
9) Investigate the success or failure of a significant number of anti-corruption projects and analyse what explains the variation in outcomes.
10) Disseminate the findings of the project through academic articles, edited books and policy papers.

Project Results:
Pillar one: Theory, History and Anthropology of Corruption

The first part of this summary deals with research conducted under Pillar 1. The overarching question guiding this research is how we can define corruption and understand the underlying social mechanisms which enable corruption and prevent formal institutions of good governance to take root in a given society or context. Historians, anthropologists and political scientists approach this research question and the analysis offers new insights on our understanding of corruption as a phenomenon.

Making Sense of the Concept of Corruption

Corruption is what in the social sciences is known as an “essentially contested concept” (Rothstein 2014:2). The definitional aspects of corruption are surrounded by scholarly disagreement and consequently, corruption has a multidimensional character. A conceptual precision of what should count as corruption is albeit essential, since a lack of such conceptual precision limits our possibility to analyze causal relationships and find out what may work in the fight against corruption (Rothstein 2014). Rothstein and Varraich (2017) seek to de-tangle this conceptual muddle and provide an accessible overview of corruption, allowing scholars and students alike to see the far-reaching place it has within academic research. Their book provides a systematic analysis of how our understanding of corruption has evolved. A fundamental issue discussed is how the opposite of corruption should be defined. They argue for the possibility of a universal understanding of corruption, and specifically what corruption is not. Unlike much of the literature surrounding the concept, which heavily uses Western political philosophy to forward an explication of how to conceptualise corruption, the book includes and borrows from Islamic Political Theory, and in particular from the text of the Muqqadimah. The book also brings together clientelism, patronage, patrimonialism, particularism, state capture, and conflict of interest onto one single spatial field, making corruption the connecting core to a family of related concepts.

Just like many other objects of interest in the social sciences, corruption is an abstract concept, since it mainly concerns intangible principles or relations between social agents. Moreover, the concept of corruption can refer to transactions or interactions that are hugely different both in nature, relevance, and scope. Since corruption is closely linked to other central normative concepts such as fairness, justice, honesty, and impartiality, the authors suggest that corruption should be conceptualized as a normative, not an empirical, concept. Furthermore, the authors argue for a universal concept of corruption as opposed to relativistic (culture bound) concept. Three arguments in particular are advanced for this understanding of corruption. First, if we accept a relativistic definition of corruption, all efforts to make empirical comparisons between countries in different parts of the world are unfruitful. Second, the right not to have to pay bribes, not to be discriminated against, and to be treated with equal respect from the judicial system, are in fact overlapping with universal human rights. Third, people living in very different cultures seem to have a very similar notion of what should be considered as corruption and which social practices and basic norms seem to promote it. The universal nature of corruption is related to what could be labelled as a public goods approach. Here, the very nature of a good being “public” is that it is not to be distributed according to the private wishes of those who are given the power/responsibility for managing them. When the principle for the management of public goods is broken by those entrusted, the ones that are victimized see this as malpractice and/or as corruption; independent of the culture. Rothstein and Torsello (2014) elaborate on this and suggest that what differs between cultures is the perceived boundary between the public and the private. The ways in which bribery is understood in different cultures relate not to different moral understandings of the problem of corruption, but rather to how different societies value the difference between private and public goods and the convertibility or blurring of goods belonging to the public and private spheres.

Varieties of Corruption: Different Forms of Corruption

Despite unprecedented attention to corruption in scholarly and policy debates, many of the most influential theories and studies of the causes and effects of corruption have traditionally used aggregate measures of corruption, failing to distinguish between different forms of corruption. Consequently, we have rather extensive knowledge on the correlates and determinants of how much corruption there is in any particular society, but much less knowledge on whether these determinants operate similarly across different forms of corruption (Bauhr 2016; Heywood 2017). The most influential empirical studies on the causes and effects of corruption use aggregate indices of the scale of the corruption problem, i.e. how much corruption there is in any particular polity, rather than seeking to understand its different forms. Bauhr (2016) suggests that better understanding the different forms of corruption, contributes to better explaining the societal effects of corruption and, by implication, the anticorruption potential of institutional and accountability reforms, and that corruption is used in efforts to seek solutions to the problems that can be of vastly different kinds. Bauhr (2016) develops a distinction between “need” corruption, i.e. corruption to gain access to fair treatment and “greed” corruption, when corruption is used to gain special illicit advantages. While the outsiders of greed corruption, i.e. those that do not personally take part in these transaction, may find this form of corruption morally reprehensible and mobilize when instances of this form of corruption is widely exposed, greed corruption is typically both secretive and collusive, and therefore only occasionally exposed, since perpetuators or insiders of these transactions have everything to gain from maintaining the status quo Furthermore, the negative effects of this form of corruption tend to occur at a substantial time lag. On the other hand, citizens seem to readily share their experiences of need corruption, making need corruption more transparent which facilitates demand for reforms. The distinction helps explain why greed corruption is so “sticky” and can coexist with relatively well functioning institutions for accountability, since outsiders only occasionally manage to effectively mobilize against it.

Furthermore, della Porta and Vannucci (2014) observe two different dynamics within networks of hidden exchanges: centrifugal and centripetal. The configuration of informal rules and enforcing mechanisms regulate the patterns of these two dynamics. In systemic centripetal corruption, an effective third-party enforcer monitors and enforces the respect of the (illegal) norms, guaranteeing the fulfillment of corruption contracts and – eventually – imposing sanctions on opportunistic agents and free-riders, therefore reducing transaction costs. The resulting high-corruption equilibrium is generally strong and stable – even if a crisis of enforcement potential of the guarantor may produce its sudden collapse. In systemic centrifugal corruption, there is no dominant enforcer available or willing to provide such services. The informal codes regulating corrupt activities are sometimes self-enforced, on a reputational basis, and have decentralized enforcement mechanisms, for instance by banning unreliable partners from future interactions. A plurality of actors may also compete or alternate, trying to supply protection in corrupt exchanges – in a polycentric model. As a consequence, the equilibrium of centrifugal corruption are somewhat less robust – even if sometimes more easily adaptable to challenges of a change in external conditions.

Ethnographic Studies of Corruption

A great deal of academic effort has been invested in innovative ways of producing knowledge about corruption. One such contribution is the development of anthropological approaches to corruption studies. Ethnographic knowledge has a strong and often hidden potential to disentangle the social and cultural complexity of corruption, but at the same time “the most common anthropological position on the study of corruption, however, is one of avoidance” (Torsello and Rothstein, 2014:264). As noted by Davide Torsello (2016:1), the word corruption “has been until recent years almost absent from the anthropological literature”. The recent publication “Corruption in Public Administration”, edited by Davide Torsello, breaks this silence and makes use of extensive fieldwork data (from Italy, Hungary, Kosovo, Bosnia, Russia, Turkey, Tanzania and Mexico) to study culturally informed moralities. One of the key findings of the volume is that societal norms and cultural practices may constitute the hummus and grounds for the acceptance of corruption in one social context, as they can become intermingled with illegal and criminal transactions and activities. However, corruption is not a cultural practice, since the decision about paying or accepting a bribe is in any case an individual decision, which may find rationalization in culture but does not originate out of some cultural practices in the void. This explains why there is no country in the world in any point in time where corruption was absolutely absent.

Analysis of these case studies has suggested a number of conclusions that are relevant for the public administration sphere in particular. First, all administrators from the studied countries have a clear idea of what corruption is about, and they understand (even if they do not always properly estimate) the societal impact of this phenomenon on their countries. Second, the public good approach to corruption is one of the ways in which some of the administrators justify corruption. One aspect which has been detected in all the case studies, albeit for different reasons, has been the perception that what does not count as a privately managed good is a resource accessible to all, but that does not mean that it is seen as a public good. “If something is nobody’s then it’s everybody’s” is the expression which has been repeated in several forms in the course of the interviews. This suggests that there is little space for the development of a socially and morally informed notion of a collective good. This depends on the very idea that in order to share a positive concept of public as collective good – i.e. as a good the access to which can be beneficial to many in society – the socially (and culturally) shaped perception of this good ought to be positive as well, and/or inspired through institutional trust.

The Global Informality Project

Another research effort that looks beyond traditional methodological and theoretical approaches is the Global Informality Project, led by Alena Ledeneva. The project focuses on informal practices across the globe and seeks to examine the existence of these invisible yet powerful practices. Informal practices can loosely be defined as ways of getting things done. Through comparative and ethnographic investigations, researchers are able to demonstrate an existence of multiple moralities, which account for the resilience of informal practices. The various practices are included in the Global Encyclopedia of Informality (Ledeneva, forthcoming) and the first Global Map of Informality, with a searchable database by practice, keyword or country. The entries made visible in the online resource maps evidence from five continents and 65 countries.

The History of Corruption
Kroze et al (forthcoming) studied corruption from a historical perspective, and provide a historically informed understanding of corruption. They offer the first long-term historical overview of corruption and anticorruption in Europe, studying corruption and anticorruption in wide-ranging historical contexts: Ancient Greece and Rome, Medieval Eurasia, Italy, France, Great Britain and Portugal, as well as the Early Modern and Modern era in Romania, the Ottoman Empire, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and the former German Democratic Republic. They also provide a critical assessment of dominant narratives about corruption in different scholarly disciplines, as well as those voiced in popular media or by politicians, and test and discuss effective approaches to the study of corruption and anticorruption in different historical and geographical contexts.
While the subject of corruption and anticorruption has captured the attention of politicians, scholars, NGOs and the global media, scant attention has been paid to the link between corruption and the change of anticorruption policies over time and place, with the attendant diversity in how to define, identify and address corruption. The authors argue that economists, political scientists and policy-makers in particular have been generally content with tracing the differences between low-corruption and high-corruption countries in the present and enshrining them in all manner of rankings and indices. The long-term trends-social, political, economic, and cultural, that have the potential of undergirding the position of various countries, play a limited role in most contemporary research. Thus, such a historical approach helps explain major moments of change in the past as well as reasons for the success and failure of specific anticorruption policies and their relation to a country's image (of itself or as construed from outside) as being more or less corrupt. It is precisely this scholarly lacuna that the present volume contributes to fill.

Pillar 2: Perceptions and Experiences of Corruption

This section summarizes the extensive research conducted under Pillar 2. The central question addressed in this research is which concrete institutional arrangements and mechanisms explain why some governments act in the public interest, while others act to benefit themselves, often at the public expense. The research focuses on the institutional organization of governments and how these affect horizontal, vertical and societal accountability. Horizontal accountability refers to when government bodies hold other government bodies to account, vertical accountability refers to when citizens hold government accountable through elections, and societal accountability refers to when citizens and civil society associations seek to hold government accountable via other channels than elections. The research involves four large-scale data collection efforts as well as over 40 published journal articles, many of which are in the top journals in the field, and three books. This has been done using the newly collected data described above and also through a number of in depth case studies (including Spain, Italy, Hungary, Bolivia, Peru, Macedonia, Portugal, UK, Romania, Lithuania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Greece and Bulgaria).
Societal Accountability and Civic Engagement

The anticorruption potential of increased electoral and societal accountability builds on a specific and fundamental assumption: that citizens will engage to punish corruption and venality. Evidence from a growing body of literature suggests that this is far from always being a reasonable assumption (Bauhr, 2016; Bauhr and Grimes, 2014; Zechtmeister and Zizumbo-Colunga, 2013; de Sousa & Moriconi, 2013). Citizens do not always punish corrupt politicians, may indeed opt to forego their right to protest and voice complaints, and often refrain from mobilizing against corruption or using their electoral right to punish corrupt politicians.

The willingness to take action depends on the type of corruption concerned, as well as its pervasiveness and visibility. Paradoxically, citizens may be less inclined to become politically involved where corruption is both more prevalent, and governments are comparatively more transparent (i.e. corruption is more visible) and in contexts where corruption reaches systemic levels (Bauhr and Grimes, 2014). Moreover, conditions for citizens’ engagement vary across different forms of corruption, in particular between need and greed corruption, as suggested by Bauhr (2016).

The autonomy of government bureaucracies is also shown to matter for how citizens and civil society associations engage with and seek to hold government accountable. When the civil service lacks autonomy and is highly politicized, access to government resources and services may also become politicized, and political parties are more inclined to use public resources for partisan ends (e.g. patronage and clientelism), an association born out empirically. For citizens, such a system incentivizes the cultivation of close ties to politicians and parties in order to increase access to public goods, which may induce citizens to abstain from using formal accountability mechanisms. For our work on this see Grimes and Cornell 2015a; Grimes and Conrnell 2015b; Grimes and Cornell 2016.

We also study anti-corruption activism in a number of European countries. In depth case study evidence suggests that their impact is still rather limited overall, though the degree of movements’ success varies considerably. Anti-corruption movements that have linked their mandate to underlying issues of social justice and the distribution of power, such as the Indignados in Spain, where the political party Podemos has adopted the framing, have enjoyed the greatest success among the three cases studied. The strategy to graft the issue of corruption onto smaller and less enduring issues, such as in the case of Hungary, seems to have yielded less favourable results. In Italy, the issue was strongly linked to the issue of organized crime, and has actually lost momentum in conjunction with the emergence of an anti-corruption party (della Porta, Caruso, & Mattoni, 2016). Zinnbauer (2015) studies the potential of crowdsourcing as an anticorruption tool and suggests that despite a number of much quoted poster book examples of crowd sourcing, the rates of failure are enormously high and even the star performers are struggling to convert online reports into meaningful advocacy and change. Interesting pathways forward that could be envisioned include a focus on ambient systems, new mash-ups and data integration efforts and the use of these platforms as social discovery mechanisms.

Electoral Accountability and Anticorruption Parties

Previous research, based primarily on case studies in a limited number of countries, has found a surprisingly high tolerance for corrupt politicians and parties, which are only marginally punished by voters. Using a broad comparative study, covering over 200 elections in 32 countries between 1981 and 2011, our research confirms that corrupt incumbents are systematically punished, but only marginally so (Bågenholm 2013), and that the loss of vote share is seldom sufficient to lead to government change. Bauhr and Charron (2016) develop a comprehensive multi-level theory, explaining why and how democracies vary in their ability to contain corruption. The results provide clear empirical evidence that grand corruption corrodes electoral accountability, and this occurs through three parallel but interrelated effects: it canalizes grievances into resignation, alienation and exit, rather than indignation and voice; enhances loyalty to corrupt politicians; and crafts deep societal divides between insiders, or beneficiaries of the dominant system, and outsiders, those left on the sidelines of the spoils of the dominant network. All these effects - loyalty, demobilization, and divisiveness –maintain corrupt politicians in power.

However, there is some reason for optimism. When the number of parties in a country is high, giving voters ideologically reasonable alternatives, voters are more likely to punish parties charged with corruption (Charron & Bågenholm, 2016). Proportional representation systems thus tend to enhance electoral accountability. Given viable options and recourses, in other words, voters in Europe do punish corruption. Moreover, anti-corruption as a campaign strategy is highly effective strategy and especially so for new parties and in countries with high levels of corruption (Bågenholm & Charron, 2014). This is hardly surprising given the higher saliency of corruption in high corrupt societies and the stronger credibility of newly established parties, which by definition have not been involved in corruption scandals before. There thus seems that corruption has a stronger electoral effect on the “reward-side” than on the “punishing-side”. Finally, corruption does not, in contrast to what previous research suggests, always depress electoral turnout. When parties make corruption a campaign issue, and in so doing give voters a means to express their frustration, perceptions of corruption actually enhance turnout (Bågenholm, Dahlberg, & Solevid, 2016). In addition, evidence suggests that new anti-corruption parties that gain power in Europe are by no means sinister opportunists who capitalized on popular discontent only to do nothing once in office. A number of new parties have been effective in curbing corruption, e.g. Res Publica in Estonia, New Era and Zatler’s Reform Party in Latvia and to some extent NDSV in Bulgaria. The GERB in Bulgaria, Public Affairs and ANO in Slovakia have, however, done little to promote change (Bågenholm & Charron, 2015).

Studies from outside the European context show that anti-corruption incumbents do not, however, in all cases bring about substantive reductions in the prevalence of corruption in their own administrations. Parties and movements that rise to power with an anti-corruption message may enact meaningful legislation and institutional reform with one hand, while quietly undermining change on the other. The Morales administration in Bolivia provides a case in point, having put in place measures to increase access to information, expanded participatory opportunities, and strengthened institutions of horizontal accountability. At the same time, he has appointed political allies to enforcement bodies, which has led to de facto amnesty for political allies, and also given privileged access to participatory arenas at the exclusion of outsiders. Moreover, little effort has been made to change the values and sense of integrity among government officials, a necessary component of meaningful change (Heywood and Zuninga 2015).

Horizontal Accountability Transparency, Audit, and Anticorruption Institutions

Government audit as well as government transparency are strongly linked in policy theory to curbing corruption. A large-scale country level survey of public administration experts in 130 countries was employed to develop conceptual precision around and to map empirically two key instruments of horizontal accountability: government audit and government transparency. Both of these prove to be strongly related to the prevalence of corruption in a state. More specifically, the aspects shown to matter most are the professionalism of supreme audit offices (Gustavsson, 2015; Sundström & Gustavsson, 2015), and the ability of the public to track government revenues (Bauhr & Grimes, 2017).

Effective audit has long been believed to be a primary mechanism for deterring public sector organizations to engage in corruption. Drawing on normative definitions of good auditing, the research evaluates supreme audit offices throughout the world with respect to whether they are independent, professionally and meritocratically staffed, and publish their findings to the public as a whole. The extent to which audit offices meet these three conditions is strongly linked to the prevalence of corruption in a country as measured by Transparency Internationals Corruption Perception Index (CPI) and also World Bank’s Control of Corruption indicator. Professionalism bears the highest positive impact on government performance, and independence of the auditing agency the lowest (Gustavson, 2015; Gustavson & Sundström, 2016). In-depth analyses of anti-corruption approaches and practices in Greece, Bulgaria and Romania suggest that these countries are at different stages in the anticorruption process, from unreflective accommodation to external demands (Greece), to reactive legitimation (Bulgaria), to proactive assimilation (Romania) (Bratu, Sotiroupolus,& Stoyanova 2017).

Conceptual and empirical advances have also been made with respect to government transparency as it relates to corruption mitigation, laying the groundwork for more precise empirical analyses (Bauhr & Grimes, 2017). Existing conceptualizations of transparency were extremely broad and not tailored to the exploration of claims regarding how transparency may affect specific policy outcomes. Transparency designed specifically to limit corruption requires that the public can systematically track the flow of revenues, transfers and expenditures. The resulting measure is strongly associated with various measures of corruption in a way that other measures are not. Empirical data from 105 countries and a new, more sensitive index (the QoG transparency indicator) lend support to the claim that higher transparency is in fact associated with lower corruption (Bauhr & Grimes 2017).

Civil service and bureaucratic structures

Meritocracy in public bureaucracies – that is, the extent to which bureaucrats are selected and promoted according to their merits and talents, rather than appointed politically by incumbents – has a host of implications for accountability and corruption. In general, as Dahlström and Wängnerud (2015) argue, a merit-based bureaucracy is a mechanism of power-sharing when it comes to take policy decisions, a mechanism that prevents politicians from using their privileged position to enrich themselves at the expense of the society at large.
Along similar lines, Dahlström and Lapuente (forthcoming) argue that when the careers of politicians and bureaucrats are separated because the latter are selected and promoted according exclusively to their merits, two independent channels of accountability – one based on political considerations, the other on peer review mechanisms – emerge. This separation forms an embedded and mutual control function in government institutions, which in turn prevents rent-seeking collusion among officials and fosters government effectiveness. Consequently, governments where politicians do not become administrators – and, vice versa, bureaucrats do not become politicians – perform better than governments where the careers of politicians and bureaucrats are intertwined.

Dahlström and Lapuente offer large-N cross-country analyses and numerous empirical illustrations indicating that a meritocratic bureaucracy leads to lower levels of corruption, higher government effectiveness, and the implementation of more modernization reforms within public administrations. Dahlström and Lapuente (2015) argue that merit-based bureaucrats are more likely to blow the whistle – in reaction to a suspicious move by their political superiors – in an open and democratic society. They show that countries with a merit based bureaucracy which are also democracies, are the most favourable combination for limiting corruption. Charron, Dahlström, Fazekas, and Lapuente (2017) find sub-national evidence of the same link between meritocracy and good government. They find that corruption risks are indeed significantly lower where bureaucrats’ career incentives exclusively follow professional criteria. In order to complement these works with qualitative evidence, Parrado, Lapuente, and Dahlström (under review) explore the causal mechanisms linking meritocracy with lower risks of corruption. By comparing public procurement processes in two similar Spanish cities, and interviewing the most important actors, they show that relatively independent bureaucrats can act as checks to prevent political moral hazard.

Boräng, Cornell, Grimes and Schuster (forthcoming) note that a politicized bureaucracy offers politicians greater opportunities to demand from bureaucrats – and raises incentives for bureaucrats to supply – public policy knowledge that is strategically biased or suppressed in a manner which benefits incumbents reputationally. Through a case analysis of Argentina’s statistical agency Böräng et al. lend credence to this causal effect, and with the use of time-series cross-section analyses, they confirm the connection between the politicization of an administration and the generation of biased knowledge.

Gender and Corruption

The observation that countries with a higher share of women in government generally have lower levels of corruption was noted decades ago (Dollar et al. 2001; Swamy et al. 2001) and has led to an assumption among policymakers that increasing the proportion of women in positions of power will provide a “quick fix” for corruption (e.g. World Bank 2001). Later work has contended that both female representation and lower corruption are simply both products of democratic development and deepening (Sung 2003, p. 708). Research carried out in the ANTICORRP program show that in the European context as well, countries with a high number of women in elected office tend to be less corrupt. Moreover, this pattern holds even at the subnational level: regions in Europe with a high number of locally elected women tend to be less corrupt than regions with a lower proportion of women in elected office (Bauhr & Wängnerud, 2016; Sundström & Wängnerud, 2016). Interesting to note is that there is no association between the proportion of women among high-ranking civil servants and the prevalence of corruption. Gender matters for tolerance of corruption, with women being less tolerant than men, but the size of the gender gap varies across Europe (Bauhr & Wängnerud 2016). Gender gaps at the citizen level are largest in the most comprehensive welfare states. Research shows that more extensive welfare states advance women’s interests. The fact that women have a much higher stake where welfare states are more extensive may explain why women react more strongly to corruption in such settings (Sundström & Wängnerud, 2016; Wängnerud, Agerberg, & Stensöta, 2016). Rather than being a function of gender-based differences in ethical and moral standards, these findings instead suggest an interest-based explanation to the link between women in government and lower levels of corruption.

Political Corruption and Integrity

Several of our researchers within pillar 2 for this programme, have contributed to The Routledge Handbook of Political Corruption edited by Prof. Paul M. Heywood (2015). The volume provides a showcase of some of the most innovative and exciting research being conducted in Europe and North America in the field of political corruption, as well as a new point of reference for all who are interested in the topic. The new book is divided into four core themes, dealing respectively with understanding and defining the nature of corruption, identifying its causes, measuring its extent, and analysing its consequences. A fifth section of the book explores new directions that are emerging in corruption research.

Efforts have also been made to investigate the impact of integrity in public life. In practice, much of the attention devoted to integrity has been largely implicit: rather than exploring in depth what should be understood as integrity in public life, and how to achieve it, researchers, activists and policy-makers have too often seemed to assume that integrity will result from the elimination of corruption (Heywood et al., 2017). Their focus has therefore overwhelmingly been on tackling corruption, rather than on promoting integrity (Heywood et al. 2017). However, “to focus primarily on corruption inevitably places emphasis on the negative behaviours we are seeking to prevent as opposed to the positive behaviours we wish to encourage” (Heywood & Rose, 2015: 102). Heywood et al. (2017) claim that promoting integrity rather than directly combatting corruption might be one potential way of addressing the need for deeper-rooted change. Such a focus places emphasis on the positive pole of public ethics rather than its negative pole, and addresses the issue that not being corrupt does not automatically translate into behaving with integrity. Because integrity has a core focus on values and ethical principles, this can help balance the tendency in anti-corruption approaches to pay attention to the rules framework and governance structures as opposed to underpinning motivations that shape behaviour (see D11.4).

Implications of Corruption

Several studies also examined the effects of government corruption. Using newly collected data at the regional level in Europe, these studies show that lower levels of corruption are associated with the establishment of small and medium businesses (Nistotskaya, Charron, & Lapuente 2015), less use of antibiotics (Rönnerstrand, & Lapuente 2015), as well as the ability of regions in Europe to attract structural funds (Charron, 2016a, 2016b). Moreover, analyses show that higher levels of education are associated with higher levels of social trust across 24 European countries. Interestingly, however, in countries with lower quality of government, the relationship is non-existent. In such contexts, where governments have higher levels of corruption and show more favourability to certain groups, the educated may see the injustice and, as a result, their level of trust is reduced. In contrast, in high quality of government countries, more education brings an understanding and appreciation of the impartiality of government institutions, promoting higher levels of social trust (Charron & Rothstein, 2016).

The Development of Several New Authoritative Data Sources on Corruption

Pillar 2 researchers also carried out extensive data collection that many of our publications build on and that will serve as an important resource for scholars for many years to come. With the inclusion of over 85 000 individuals within 206 European regions in 21 countries, the Quality of Government EU Regional Data is the largest and most comprehensive survey study of regional level governance in a multi-country context to date. The data reveal striking variation both between and within European countries, with respect to the quality of government. Countries such as Italy, Romania, Belgium or Spain display remarkable variation, while other countries, such as Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands, show little to no variation between regions. A second large-scale data collection was carried out in The Quality of Government Expert Survey. The survey was fielded in 2015 with the objective to capture different dimensions of quality of government such as politicization, professionalization, openness, and impartiality. The data comprises 1,294 experts in 159 countries. Both surveys were conducted by the Quality of Government Institute at the University of Gothenburg, and are fully accessible.

Transparency International has launched two large-scale surveys as a part of their regional series of the Global Corruption Barometer. The first survey includes nearly 60,000 people across 42 countries in Europe and Central Asia. The second contribution is the Sub-Saharan African edition of the Global Corruption Barometer. The survey was made in collaboration with the Afrobarometer in 2014 and over 43,000 citizens in 28 countries were asked about their experiences and perceptions of corruption in their countries.

Furthermore, an article by Charron (2016) employs the new survey data to examine whether widely used measures of corruption reflect actual leveld of public sector corruption.The paper explores the extent to which citizens’ assessments match the assessments of experts in rating the levels of corruption in a country or region. As a counter to the concerns that are often raised about perceptions-based measures of corruption, the paper finds strong consistency between citizen and expert based data on corruption.

Pillar 3: Impact of Corruption: Organized Crime and Media

The research that has been produced within Pillar 3 in the ANTICORRP programme deals with the relationship between corruption and the media, and the link between corruption and organized crime. With regards to the media and corruption, the focus is on how corruption is reflected in the media and what trends that emerge in corruption coverage. The vulnerability of the media itself to corruption is also examined. The research on organized crime and corruption draws on a variety of approaches in legal, anthropological, and sociological work, and aims to unravel the impact of organized crime and corruption on public contracting and the conditions under which organized crime infiltrates electoral politics.
Organized Crime and Corruption

EU institutions have attempted to launch a common action against organized crime since the early 1990’s, in an attempt to counter its negative effects on the rule of law, stability and development (Sberna & Vannucci, 2016:26). Still, some 3,600 criminal international organizations are estimated to be active in the European Union (SOCTRA 2013 in Sberna and Vannuci 2016). What is more, many criminal activities are increasingly cross border in nature, which puts additional strain on regional cooperation. Our research produces evidence on both the electoral impact of organized crime and its impact on public procurement processes. The quantitative assessment of the criminal-political nexus is partly based on the Organized Crime and Corruption (OCC) events database, in which more than 150 events of organized crime and links to corruption are assembled. Olivieri and Sberna (2014) analyse the relation between criminal violence and elections in Italy where a large number of mafia-like groups operate. The empirical analysis is drawn from a unique panel data of monthly intimidation attacks reported by police forces in 105 Italian provinces from 1983 to 2003. Through a difference-in-differences design, the paper finds statistical evidence that as elections get closer intimidation attacks increase in those provinces with a strong criminal presence. Moreover, the study examines how mafia-like groups find opportunities for and constraints in using violence depending on the fragmentation of the political market and on the effectiveness of law-enforcement. The paper shows that criminal violence during elections is positively correlated with local public spending. Furthermore, Fazekas, Sberna and Vannucci (2016) indicate that the dissolution of a local government due to mafia infiltration correlates with higher degree of market competition in the public procurement sector. While the evidence is only descriptive, they found a significant upward association between the average number of bidders after municipalities are dissolved due to mafia infiltration and a new elected government takes office. Conversely, the results suggest a downward shift in the number of not-open tendering procedures, and in the average value of relative prices of contracts.

Sberna and Vannucci (2016) contribute towards a classification of organized crime centred on what groups do and make a distinction between organizations that simply trade on the market – that is, produce or sell illegal goods or services – and organizations that aim to govern the market - by settling disputes, enforcing and generally governing illegal transactions (Varese, 2011:12). This distinction has implications for the analysis of the corruption-organized crime nexus. Organized crime groups who simply trade on markets can profit from corruption as it might enable their illegal business, and organized crime can thus become a cause of corruption. When criminal groups seek to govern the market, organized crime groups can become a resource enabler for corruption. The ambition of the research is also to present more standardized procedures for gathering data on organized crime. Furthermore, the analysis distinguishes between functionally or territorially based organization, and hierarchical or network structure. Groups who are limited to a single territory are more likely to become embedded within legitimate business and achieve organizational stability over time, this combination of territorially-based and network-like organization facilitates political-criminal exchanges (Sberna & Vannucci, 2016:14). Embedded groups are also more likely to have a horizontally structured organization, which creates more flexibility and ability to obscure illicit activities and pursue their criminal objectives.

The work on organized crime also studied the effects of corruption on human trafficking. The Four Country Reports (deliverable 9.3) and the Analytical Report (deliverable 9.4) present the findings of four country studies (Bulgaria, Croatia, Italy and Kosovo) and a comparative assessment of them, by showing the dramatic impact of human trafficking for sexual exploitation in Europe and how corruption at all levels is a conducive factor that might contribute to the increase in trafficking. Although the use of corruption is often mentioned along with human trafficking, few studies have examined the empirical evidence of the factors and mechanisms behind this nexus. The study explores key aspects of the link between human trafficking and corruption, especially focusing on the role of corruption in avoiding prosecution, impeding investigations and court trials or – should these efforts fail – minimising punishments. The research findings shed light on the following key aspects of the link between corruption and trafficking: 1) the most prominent corruption channels and the actors involved in protecting organised criminals from persecution; 2) the corruption reach of organised crime groups; 3) main factors facilitating the emergence of corruption schemes (legislation, socio-economic factors, ties between criminals and influential managers of legal companies, heirs to criminal holdings, etc.). The impact that trafficking-related corruption has on victims is also addressed and recommendations for tackling the problem are provided. The methodology of the study included analysis of media reports, analysis of court cases, and in-depth semi-structured interviews with NGO practitioners, law enforcement officers, and prosecutors.
Corruption Reporting in the News Media

The second relationship under scrutiny in Pillar 3 is that between the media and corruption. The work consisted of computer and human assisted content analysis of major European newspapers (including tabloid, quality, and business newspapers from France, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, the UK, Romania, Slovakia and Germany). The work investigates how corruption is reflected in the media and what trends emerge in corruption coverage. The work analyses a large corpus of newspaper articles (107,248 articles) from the period 2004 to 2013. The research shows that corruption coverage varies between well-established democracies (United Kingdom and France) and what the authors’ define as newer democracies (Hungary, Romania, Latvia, Slovakia, but also Italy). In the latter countries, the coverage of corruption focuses essentially on political and public administration corruption, oftentimes used to attack political competitors, while in the formers, large space is devoted to international and foreign countries’ corruption and corruption in sport. Italy is the country with the largest numbers of stories on corruption followed by the United Kingdom. In all countries major attention is devoted to “grand corruption” while “petty corruption” is almost completely absent.

Furthermore Mancini et al. (2017) suggest that freedom of press is far from the only dimension that affects the ability to and the way in which news media report on corruption. Media market segmentation, political parallelism, and media instrumentalization determines different representations according to the authors. The British coverage is specially affected by media market competition and subsequent market segmentation. Media instrumentalization and dramatization of corruption reporting is particularly prevalent in the Italian case, where journalists are responsive to interests that are particular, vested, and partisan and that allow the media to pursue specific goals that favour private rather than public interests. The French coverage shares specific features with both the British and the Italian coverage.

Pillar four: Policy responses to Corruption
The research conducted in Pillar 4 focuses on policy responses to corruption, and more specifically on corruption and governance improvements from global and continental perspectives; corruption, assistance, and development; and monitoring and enforcement of anti-corruption legislation in Europe. The research undertaken in this research strand focuses on the development and impact of responses to corruption and provides several analyses of policies of government and inter-governmental actors such as NGOs, grass root movements, politicians and businesses; assessing the adoption and implementation of legal instruments against corruption and explaining their impact or lack thereof.

We know that most of today’s advanced democracies somehow accomplished their transformation to good governance and control of corruption through a long historical evolution. Using the work conducted by researchers involved in two of the ANTICORRP 11 work packages (work package 3 and 8), the Quest of Good Governance (Mungiu-Pippidi, 2016) addresses the question of why some societies manage to control corruption so that it manifests itself only occasionally, while other societies remain systemically corrupt. The book is about how societies reach that point when integrity becomes the norm and corruption the exception in regard to how public affairs are run and public resources are allocated. It primarily asks what lessons we have learned from historical and contemporary experiences in developing corruption control, which can aid policy-makers and civil societies in steering and expediting this process. Few states now remain without either an anticorruption agency or an Ombudsman, yet no statistical evidence can be found that they actually induce progress. Using both historical and contemporary studies, and easy to understand statistics, the book looks at how to diagnose, measure, and change governance so that those entrusted with power and authority manage to defend public resources. The book provides a comprehensive empirical theory of governance, unifying important disparate contributions in the areas of corruption, quality of government, and rule of law. It attempts to directly answer the big question of what explains virtuous circles in good governance and features research and policy tools to diagnose and build contextualized national strategies. One of its findings is that external interventions and conditionality seem to have had a limited influence, what matters most is not international efforts, but domestic ones. Thus, changes seem to result from domestic agency and broad reforms following exceptional circumstances, such as democratization after a dictatorship, rather than from typical internationally assisted anticorruption strategies focused on the civil service and the judiciary (pp.211–212). WP 3 also produced a number of EU reports/ deliverables and case studies available here Some of these are also published in a Journal of Democracy special issue, including Kupatadze (2016) on Georgia, Göbel (2016) on Taiwan and Buquet and Piñeiro (2016) on Uruguay. The case studies will also be published in the forthcoming volume Transitions to Good Governance: Creating Virtous circles of Anticorruption (Mungiu-Pippidi & Johnston, forthcoming).

Determinants of Corruption; the Index of Public Integrity

Researchers have also studied the drivers of corruption and identified theoretically relevant and statistically significant determinants through a review of the literature and econometric analysis. These determinants can in turn be used to trace back a country’s performance to specific components, which in turn could help policy makers to identify reform areas for improvement. Mungiu-Pippidi and Dadašov (2016) use the factors identified as determinants of corruption control to construct a composite index, the Index of Public Integrity (IPI). The IPI consists of six components: the degree of the judicial independence, the extent of administrative discretion, the level of trade openness, the degree of budget transparency, the endowment of citizens with electronic means, and the degree of free media. From a national perspective, the IPI could serve as a starting point for the design of good governance strategies.

Aid, Public Spending and Corruption

Part of our research has also investigated the nexus between corruption, development, and assistance. This included an assessment of EU-funded infrastructure projects in the construction section in selected countries, including Germany, Hungary, Croatia, Bulgaria, Romania, and Turkey. Each country report contains recommendations, which can be grouped in three main areas: improvement of transparency, training of administrators, and monitoring (see Government Favouritism in Europe). Furthermore, the research included studies on the impact of EU conditionality and EU aid in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Tunisia, Egypt, Ghana, and Tanzania. While the instruments used by the EU showed some success across all countries, their application was not consistent. The recommendations stemming from these reports show the need for locally led development, more political dialogue, better incentives and support for civil society (Deliverable 8.2). Time series data was collected to capture financial development assistance from the EU institutions as well as EU member states and examine the EU’s influence over governance in EU aid recipient countries. It analysed if, and if so how, EU aid has succeeded in changing governance for the better in recipient countries, what theories of change explain progress in good governance, and how the EU’s good governance promotion relates to the countries, as well as presented policy recommendations (policy report D8.3) In a recently published article, Dadašov (2017) investigates the impact of European aid flow on quality of governance in aid recipient developing countries. The results show that bilateral aid from European donors does not have any impact on governance. However, multilateral financial assistance from the EU institutions, allocated at the EU supranational level, leads to an improvement in governance indicator. However,, Fazekas et al (2013) suggest that EU funds considerably increase corruption risks in Central and Eastern Europe in at least two principal ways. First, by making a large amount of additional public resources available for rent extraction in public procurement; second, by failing to implement sufficient controls of corruption counter-balancing additional resources for corruption (Fazekas et al. 2013:87).

New Data on Corruption Risks in Public Procurement in Europe
The work has also led to the development of innovative new data on corruption risks in public procurement in European countries. Building on the work of Fazekas and colleagues, the data contain information on individual public procurement tenders that are regulated administrative procedures in which public bodies purchase goods and services for the 28 EU member states (EU28) between 2009 and 2013, including, for example, contract value, the deadline for submitting bids, and the assessment criteria used. They derive from the European Union’s Tenders Electronic Daily ( which is the mandatory online publication that falls under the remit of the Public Procurement Directive that aims to foster a single market in government contracts. This means that large (both national and EU) contracts are included in the database, with publication thresholds varying over time, while being approximately 125,000 Euro for service contracts and 4,000,000 Euro for public works contracts. The database contains about 2.2 million contracts awarded for the entire period. Similarly, structured and regulated public procurement data exists across the globe, making our measurement strategy generally replicable outside Europe as well ( The full contract-level public procurement database can be downloaded at For full indicator descriptions see Fazekas-Kocsis (2015). The measures have been used to tap into grand corruption risks and deliberate restriction of open competition for government contracts in order to benefit a well-connected company, in recent publications (See Bauhr & Charron, 2017; Dahlström, Charron, Lapuente, & Fazekas, 2017; Fazekas, King, & Toth, 2016; Fazekas & Cingolana, 2017).

The Impact of Anti-Corruption Legislation

What is the impact of anticorruption regulation? A very current issue discussed among both scholars and policymakers is what type of influence – positive or negative – the proliferation of international laws and regulation really has. As argued by Anagnostou and Psychogiopoulou (2015), an axiomatic assumption or explicit argument from many actors is that international anti-corruption norms help to curb state-level corruption. One strand of research in the ANTICORRP programme has delved into this issue and investigated the implementation of anti-corruption legislation and its impact in the EU member states (Mendelski, 2016; Mungiu-Pippidi & Anagnostou, 2014). The relevance is evident, as millions of euros have been spent on judicial and anti-corruption reforms. Still, some countries are succeeding in implementing the rule of law, while others witness stagnating or even declining trends despite comprehensive reforms. Mendelski (2016) shows how speedy reforms in Central East Europe (CEE), implemented and enforced in order to meet the demands of the EU, have had a partly negative impact on the legislative process in EU accession countries. The study suggests that the EU has facilitated an alignment of domestic laws to international standards, but has at the same time contributed to undermine the legal stability (Mendelski 2016).

List of ANTICORRP publications as of March 2017
Published Articles

1. “European Aid and Governance: Does the Source Matter?” by Ramin Dadasov (HERTIE), The European Journal of Development Research (Online), February 2017.
2. “Careers, Connections, and Corruption Risks: Investigating the impact of bureaucratic meritocracy on public procurement processes”. By Nicholas Charron (QOG), Carl Dahlström (QOG), Mihály Fazekas (BCE), and Victor Lapuente (QOG), Journal of Politics 79(1), January 2017, pp. 89-104.
3. “Representations of Corruption in the British, French, and Italian Press: Audience Segmentation and the Lack of Unanimously Shared Indignation” by Paolo Mancini, Marco Mazzoni, Alessio Cornia, Rita Marchetti (UNIPG), The International Journal of Press/Politics, December 2016.
4. “The EU’s rule of law promotion in post-Soviet Europe: what explains the divergence between Baltic States and EaP countries?” by Martin Mendelski (SAR), Eastern Journal of European Studies, Vol. 7., Issue 2, December 2016, pp. 111-144.
5. “Media´s Controversial Roles/impact on/in Examples of (un)Covering Fraud with EU Funds” by Andrey Skolkay (SKAMBA), in Smuk, Peter (ed.), "Costs of Democracy," Gondolat Budapest, 2016, pp. 152 - 176
6. “The media coverage of corruption: the case of Slovakia” by Andrej Skolkay (SKAMBA), Otázky žurnalistiky/Issues of Journalism, vol. 59, 3-4/2016, pp. 63- 80
7. “Does education lead to higher generalized trust? The importance of quality of government,” by Nicholas Charron, Bo Rothstein (QOG), International Journal of Educational Development, Volume 50, September 2016, Pages 59-73.
8. “Can a “Lone wolf” quasi-investigative journalist substitute low functionality of the law enforcement system?” by Andrej Školkay (SKAMBA), Central European Journal of Communication, Vol. 9, no 2 (17), Fall 2016.
9. “Need or Greed? Conditions for Collective Action against Corruption” by Monika Bauhr (QOG), Governance, August 2016.
10. “Explaining the allocation of regional Structural Funds: The conditional effect of governance and self-rule,” by Nicholas Charron (QOG), European Union Politics, July 2016.
11. “Ideology, Party Systems and Corruption Voting in European Democracies” by Nicholas Charron, Andreas Bågenholm (QOG), Electoral Studies, Volume 41, March 2016, Pages 35-49.
12. “Media coverage of corruption: the role of inter-media agenda setting in the context of media reporting on scandals,” Andrej Školkay (SKAMBA), Alena Ištoková, Srodkowoeuropejskie Studie Polityczne, Nr 2/2016.
13. “Collusion between politicians and journalists in the context of wiretapping of journalists,” by Andrej Školkay (SKAMBA), Srodkowoeuropejskie Studie Polityczne, Nr 2/2016.
14. “Violence and the cost of honesty: Rethinking bureaucrats’ choices to take bribes,” by Aksel Sundtröm (QOG), Public Administration, Blackwell Publishing, United Kingdom, January 2016.
15. “Learning from Virtuous Circles” by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE), Journal of Democracy, Vol. 27/Issue 1, Johns Hopkins University Press, United States, January 2016, pp. 95-109.
16. “Georgia’s Break with the Past” by Alexander Kupatadze (UCL), Journal of Democracy, Vol. 27/Issue 1, Johns Hopkins University Press, United States, January 2016, pp. 110-123.
17. “Taiwan’s Fight Against Corruption”, by Christian Goebel (GIGA), Journal of Democracy, Vol. 27/Issue 1, Johns Hopkins University Press, United States, January 2016, pp. 124-138.
18. “Uruguay’s Shift from Clientelism,” by Daniel Buquet, Rafael Piñeiro (GIGA), Journal of Democracy, Vol. 27/Issue 1, Johns Hopkins University Press, United States, January 2016, pp. 139-151.
19. “Gender and Corruption: The Mediating Power of Institutional Logics,” by Helena Stensöta, Lena Wängnerud, Richard Svensson (QOG), Governance, Vol. 28/Issue 4, Blackwell Publishing, United Kingdom, October 2015, pp. 475- 496.
20. “Indignation or Resignation: The Implications of Transparency for Societal Accountability” by Monika Bauhr, Marcia Grimes (QOG), Governance Vol. 27/Issue 2, Blackwell Publishing, United Kingdom, pp. 291-320.
21. “Corruption as an obstacle to women's political representation: Evidence from local councils in 18 European countries,” by Aksle Sundström, Lena Wangnerud (QOG), Party Politics, Sage Publications, United Kingdom,
September 2015, pp. 1-16.
22. “Curbing Corruption or Promoting Integrity? Probing the hidden conceptual challenge,” by Paul M. Heywood (UNOTT) and Jonathan Rose, in P. Hardi, P.M. Heywood and D. Torsello (eds) Debates of Corruption and Integrity (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), pp.102-19.
23. “Centripetal and Centrifugal Corruption in Post-democratic Italy,” by Donatella della Porta, Salvatore Sberna and Alberto Vannucci (SNS),: Italian Politics, Vol 30, Issue 1, September 2015, pp. 198-217.
24. “The Limits of Rule Governance” by Paul M. Heywood and Jonathan Rose, in A. Lawton, Z. van der Wal and L. Huberts (eds), Ethics in Public Policy and Management (London: Routledge, 2015).
25. “A new model of clientelism: political parties, public resources, and private contributors” by Sergiu Gherghina, Clara Volintiru (SAR), European Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, September 2015, pp. 1 -23.
26. “Institutions as Incentives for Civic Action: Bureaucratic Structures, Civil Society, and Disruptive Protests” by Agnes Cornell , Marcia Grimes (QOG) Journal of Politics, Vol. 77/Issue 3, Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, July 2015, pp. 664-678.
27. "Turkish Experience with Public Private Partnerships in Infrastructure: Opportunities and Challenges", by Ugur Emek (HAT), Utilities Policy, 37, July 2015, pp. 120-129.
28. “Mapping the Regional Divide in Europe: A Measure for Assessing Quality of Government in 206 European Regions,” by Nicholas Charron, Lewis Dijkstra, Victor Lapuente (QOG), Social Indicators Research, Vol. 122/Issue 2, Springer Netherlands, June 2015, pp. 315-346.
29. ”Information Asymmetry in Politics and the Ideal types of Corruption” by Zoltán Szántó, István János Tóth (BCE), Ekonomske Ideje I Praska/Economic Ideas and Practice 2015:(18) pp. 7-20
30. “Crowd-Sourcing Corruption: What Petrified Forests, Street Music, Bath Towels and the Taxman Can Tell Us About the Prospects for Its Future” by Dieter Zinnbauer (TI), Policy & Internet, Volume 7, Issue 1, March 2015, pp 1–24
31. “Anticorruption Policy in Turkey: Instruments, Issues, and Influences” by Muhittin Acar (HAT), in Public Policymaking in a Globalized World, edited by Korel Göymen and Robin Lewis, Istanbul: Sabancı University-IPC pp. 289- 322.
32. “Corruption: Good Governance Powers Innovation” by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE), published originally in Nature
33. “The coverage of corruption in Hungary” by Ágnes Czibik, Boróka Pápay, Zoltán Szántó, István János Tóth (BCE), in: Aleksandar Zivkovic, Dejan Molnar, Zaklina Stojanovic, Emilija Manic (szerk.) Ekonomska politika i razvoj: tematski zaborbik radova.
34. Beograd: Univerzitet u Beogradu, Ekonomski fakultet, Centar za izdavacku delatnost, 2015. pp. 187-200.
35. “Do corruption measures have a perception problem? Assessing the relationship between experiences and perceptions of corruption among citizens and experts” by Nicholas Charron (QOG) and published in the
European Political Science Review in January 2015
36. “Close but no Cigar: the measurement of corruption” by Paul M Heywood and Jonathan Rose (UNOTT) and published in December 2014 in the Journal of Public Policy
37. “Corruption as an obstacle to women’s political representation: Evidence from local councils in 18 European countries” by Aksel Sundström and Lena Wängnerud (QOG) and published in Party Politics in October 2014
38. “Economy, corruption or floating voters? Explaining the breakthroughs of antiestablishment
reform parties in Eastern Europe” by Seán Hanley and Allan Sikk (UCL) and published in September 2014 in Party Politics(
39. “Bribery in Preindustrial Societies: Understanding the Universalism- Particularism Puzzle” by Bo Rothstein (QOG) and Davide Torsello (UNIBG) and published in the Journal of Anthropological Research in September 2014(
40. “Mapping the Regional Divide in Europe: A Measure for Assessing Quality of Government in 206 European Regions” by Nicholas Charron, Lewis Dijkstra,Victor Lapuente (QOG) and published in Social Indicators Research in July 2014 (
41. “Indignation or Resignation: The Implications of Transparency for Societal Accountability” by Monika Bauhr and Marcia Grimes (QOG) and published in April 2014 (
42. “Becoming Denmark: Historical Designs of Corruption Control” by AlinaMungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) in 2014(
43. “The Legacies of 1989: the Transformative Power of Europe Revisited” byAlina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) in Journal of Democracy January 2014(
44. “Domestic Implementation of Human Rights Judgments in Europe: Legal Infrastructure and Government Effectiveness Matter” by Dia Anagnostou (ELIAMEP) and Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) published in the European Journal of International Law, January 2014(
45. “Bir Kamu Politikası Olarak Türkiye’de Yolsuzlukla Mücadele,” (Anti-Corruption as a Public Policy in Turkey: Legal-Institutional Framework) by Acar Muhittin and Kadir Dede (HAT), in Kamu Politikası—Kuram ve Uygulama (Public Policy—Theory and Practice) (In Turkish), edited by Mete Yıldız and M. Zahit Sobacı, Ankara: Adres.
46. “Political Science Approaches to Integrity and Corruption” by Paul Heywood(UNOTT) and Jonathan Rose, Human Affairs, 23:2, 2013, pp. 148-59.
47. “Controlling Corruption Through Collective Action” by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi(HERTIE) and published in the January 2013 of the Journal of Democracy
48. “Who Will Be the “Principled-Principals”? Perceptions of Corruption and Willingness to Engage in Anticorruption Activism”. Governance, 29(3), 351-369. Peiffer, A., & Alvarez, L. (2016).
49. “Applying principal-agent and collective action theories to the problem of corruption in systemically corrupt countries.” Ethics in Public Policy and Management: A Global Research Companion, 109. Peiffer, C., & Marquette, H. (2015).

Forthcoming Articles

“Insider or Outsider? Grand corruption and Electoral Accountability” by Monika Bauhr and Nicholas Charron. Comparative Politial Studies 2017.
“Reducing Corruption Equally for all? Petty Corruption, Government Favoritism and Female Representation “. by Monika Bauhr and Lena Wängnerud (2017)
“Can transparency curb corruption? Purpose and Principals”. By Bauhr, M., & Grimes, M. (2017).
“La copertura giornalistica della corruzione” (Media coverage of corruption) by Paolo Mancini (UNIPG), in Polis, 2017.
“Corruption mechanisms, actors and significance for human trafficking: Evidence from Bulgaria” by Nadya Stoynova (CSD), 17th Cross-border Crime Colloquium conference report, Forthcoming 2017.

Published Books
Three editions of a book series “The Anticorruption Report” were published in the course of the project. The first Volume Controlling Corruption in Europe was published in September 2013. It provides a comprehensive analysis of causes and consequences of corruption in three European regions, presenting corruption risks for several European countries and concrete policy recommendations on how to effectively address those risks. The second volume The Anticorruption Frontline was published in September 2014. It looked at corruption as a central issue in the context of protests across the globe and provided key case studies. Government Favouritism
in Europe, the third volume of the annual Anticorruption Report came out in in October 2015. It looked at objective indicators and offers both quantitative and qualitative assessments of the linkage between political corruption and organised crime using statistics on spending, procurement contract data and judicial data. All three volumes were edited by Prof. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) and featured contributions from several ANTICORRP consortium members.
The Routledge Handbook of Political Corruption was edited by Prof. Paul M. Heywood (UNOTT) and published in 2015 by Routledge. It provides a showcase of the most innovative and exciting research being conducted in Europe and North America in the field of political corruption, as well as a new point of reference for all who are interested in the topic. Several contributions to the handbook were written by ANTICORRP
Elites, Institutions, and the Quality of Government was the first edited volumes resulting from the ANTICORRP project. It was edited by Carl Dahlström and Lena Wängnerud (QOG) and displays many contributions from several ANTICORRP researchers and affiliates, including Philip Keefer, Principal Advisor, Institutions for Development at the Inter-American Development Bank and member of the ANTICORRP advisory board. It
was published in August 2015 by Palgrave Macmilan.
The Quest for Good Governance: How Societies Develop Contorl of Corruption by Prof. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) was published in August 2015 by Cambridge University Press. It was distributed to key anti-corruption scholars and received excellent international reviews. Prof. Mungiu-Pippidi presented the book at its findings at a series of academic and policy oriented events across the world, notably at Columbia University, Harvard University, the Legatum Institute, the OECD, the UNODC and the World Bank.
Corruption in Public Administration: An Ethnographic Approach, edited by Davide Torsello (UNIBG) was published as another edited volume as a key result of WP4 of the ANTICORRP project. It displays many contributions from several ANTICORRP researchers and affiliates, including Muhittin Acar (HAT), Claudia Baez Camargo (BIG), Elena Denisova-Schmidt (UCL), Zaira Tiziana Lofranco (UNIBG), Maria Giulia
Pezzi (UNIBG). It was published in August 2016 by Edward Elgar Publishing.
Making Sense of Corruption by Bo Rothstein and Aiysha Varraich (QOG) was published in February 2017 by Cambridge University Press. It provides an accessible and systematic analysis of how our understanding of corruption has evolved. The authors identify gaps in the research and make connections between related concepts such as clientelism, patronage, patrimonialism, particularism and state capture.

Forthcoming Books
Transitions to Good Governance: Creating Virtuous Circles of Anticorruption. This volume was edited by Prof. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE) and Michael Johnston and will published in 2017 by Edward Elgar Publishers.
Organizing Leviathan. Politicians, Bureaucrats, and the Making of Good Government by Carl Dahlström, Carl and Victor Lapuente (QOG) will be published by Cambridge University Press in 2017.
The Encyclopedia of Informality, edited by Alena Ledeneva (UCL) will be published in mid-2017 by University College London Press and features many contributions by ANTICORRP researchers.
Integrity Management: Rediscovering values in public service will be submitted to Cambridge University Press in late 2017 by ANTICORRP researchers at UNOTT.

Published Special Issues
A number of journals featured special issue that were devoted exclusively to results of the ANTICORRP project:
European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, Volume 22, Issue 3, September 2016. Special Issue: Measuring Corruption In Europe and Beyond. Editor: Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (HERTIE)
1. Editorial Notes: “For a New Generation of Objective Indicators in Governance and Corruption Studies,” by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, pp. 363-367
2. An Objective Corruption Risk Index Using Public Procurement Data,” by Mihály Fazekas, István János Tóth (BCE), Lawrence Peter King, pp. 369-397
3. Measuring Government Favouritism Objectively: The Case of Romanian Public Construction Sector,” by Irina Mădălina Doroftei (SAR), pp. 399-413
4. Measuring Control of Corruption by a New Index of Public Integrity,” by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, Ramin Dadašov (HERTIE), pp. 415-438
5. Opening Public Officials’ Coffers: A Quantitative Analysis of the Impact of Financial Disclosure Regulation on National Corruption Levels,” by Gustavo A. Vargas, David Schlutz (HERTIE), pp. 439-475
6. Measuring Political Corruption from Audit Results: A New Panel of Brazilian Municipalities,” by Bianca Vaz Mondo (HERTIE) pp. 477-498.
7. “Measuring Meritocracy in the Public Sector in Europe: a New National and Sub- National Indicator,” by Nicholas Charron, Carl Dahlström, Victor Lapuente (QOG), pp. 499-523.
8. “Integrating Institutional and Behavioural Measures of Bribery”, by Richard Rose, Caryn Peiffer, Pages 525-542
9. “Trends in Corruptions Around the World” by Laarni Escresa, Lucio Picci, pp. 543-564

The Slavonic and East European Review, Volume 95, No 1, February 2017. Special Issue: Innovations in Corruption Studies. Editor Prof. Alena Ledeneva (UCL):
1. “Corruption Studies for the Twenty-First Century: Paradigm Shifts and Innovative Approaches” by Alena Ledeneva, Roxana Bratu and Philipp Köker, pp. 1-20
2. “Rethinking Corruption: Hocus-Pocus, Locus and Focus” by Paul M. Heywood, pp. 21-48
3. “Where Does Informality Stop and Corruption Begin? Informal Governance and the Public/Private Crossover in Mexico, Russia and Tanzania” by Claudia Baez-Camargo and Alena Ledeneva, pp. 49-75
4. “Breaking the Cycle? How (Not) to Use Political Finance Regulations to Counter Public Procurement Corruption” by Mihály Fazekas and Luciana Cingolani, pp. 76-116
5. “Through the Lens of Social Constructionism: The Development of Innovative Anti-Corruption Policies and Practices in Bulgaria, Greece and Romania, 2000–
2015” by Roxana Bratu, Dimitri A. Sotiropoulos and Maya Stoyanova, pp. 117- 150
6. “Managing Business Corruption: Targeting Non-Compliant Practices in Systemically Corrupt Environments” by Stanislav Shekshnia, Alena Ledenevaand Elena Denisova-Schmidt, pp. 151-174.

Forthcoming Special Issues
In 2017 a special issue of Crime, Law, and Social Change, edited by Prof. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi will be published, featuring research of several ANTICORRP researchers on evidence based national integrity systems and enabling context for anti-corruption.
Two special issues will be dedicated to findings of ANTICORRP WP6. This will include one Special Issue of “Problemi dell’informazione” and one issue of the “European Journal of Communication.” Both will be edited by Paolo Mancini

Potential Impact:

Summary of Dissemination Activities

ANTICORRP dissemination was covered within work package 12 of the project, which was led first by TI and since late 2013 by HERTIE. It included contributions by all consortium members. The efforts managed to establish ANTICORRP as a key resource for professionals working on anti-corruption issues, academics and policy-makers alike.
The project informed a rethink of the way academia looks at corruption and anti-corruption strategies. Over the five years of the project ANTICORRP researchers frequently spoke at academic conferences and engaged in the exchange of academic ideas. They also presented at events organised by national governments, as well as international governmental and non-governmental organisations. Their work and the research results put together by the project are now frequently cited by key stakeholders in the field of anti-corruption policymaking. While a lot of work is still left to do, it is safe to say that ANTICORRP contributed to a better understanding of corruption as a public policy problem. Its research results informed an ongoing rethink of strategy of those actors who are defining anti-corruption policy around the world. The impact of the project can thus be felt in academia and in policy-making alike.
The dissemination work of the ANTICORRP fostered an exchange with the academic community and sought to engage other researchers with the work put forward by the project. As a policy-oriented project, however, ANTICORRP also focussed on disseminating its research results to the wider public and, particularly the findings into the policy-making process. All consortium members were engaged in contributing to the dissemination efforts.
A key focus of dissemination efforts was to build an online presence for the project and to provide a platform for exchange with key stakeholders. After it was redesigned, was launched in early 2014. It successfully served as a platform to present the work of the ANTICORRP project and to connect to practitioners and key stakeholders. Together with the project’s twitter account it was used to share information, in combination with partners’ websites and newsletters. Project results were also shared through partner websites, including the webpage of the Quality of Government institute The ANTICORRP_UCL webpage the Anti-Corruption Research Network (ACNR, established by TI, active until 2015) and the European Research Centre for Anti-Corruption and State-Building (ERCAS, established by HERTIE). As part of the project’s dissemination efforts, the project also produced a series of interviews with key anti-corruption experts which were shared on YouTube. The project also published three issue specific websites: which presents the Index of Public Integrity (IPI), a new more objective and actionable way to measure corruption a global online resource on the world’s informal practices an online tracking system for Hungarian public procurement contracts.
Throughout the course of the project, ANTICORRP researchers established a strong presence on international events relevant for anti-corruption research and for policy-makers and practitioners working in the field. ANTICORRP researchers were often represented at academic and non-academic events. While ANTICORRP organised some events independently, a large number of organisations invited ANTICORRP researchers to speak at their events or events that were co-organised with consortium members.
As part of the dissemination plan, a series of research to policy workshops and other events were planned in consultation with all consortium members. 18 such events took place until the end of the project and research from all substantive work packages was presented across many different countries in the EU and beyond. While the events varied in size, they all managed to engage policy-makers and practitioners and thus helped to disseminate research results to key stakeholders.
Finally, ANTICORRP produced a large amount of academic research, which was and will be published in thirteen books (five are forthcoming), almost 50 academic articles and five special issues (three forthcoming). This vast amount of research was also reflected in the projects media presence, which resulted at least over 60 media mentions (mostly through newspaper articles). Many ANTICORRP researchers are recognised by the media as key experts in their field.

List of Websites:

Contact information:
Scientific Coordinator
Dr. Monika Bauhr, Quality of Government Institute

Project Manager
Dr. Andreas Bågenholm, Quality of Government Institute

Project Coordinator
Dalila Sabanic, Quality of Government Institute