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Alina Mungiu-Pippidi

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Alina Mungiu-Pippidi

In the academic world as well as in international development, after many years of being marginal, corruption has resurfaced as a major issue. This chapter outlines our understanding of corruption as a type of particularistic social allocation of public resources. It defines it in opposition to distribution based on ethical universalism and as the outcome of equilibrium between opportunities for corruption and constraints on elite behavior. We define what we understand as a virtuous circle—the passage from extractive to inclusive institutions—and why we decided to study them in this book. Throughout this chapter, we also explain step by step how we identified the criteria for contemporary achievers that managed to establish virtuous circles, and argue for the selection of the case studies presented in this volume. The chapter argues for a diagnostic tool nested in quantitative evidence and presents the different indicators that we can use in this context. Furthermore, the narrative presents two paths to better equilibria between opportunities and constraints. The paths look at the modernization of the state and the modernization of society. In this chapter we set the scene for the in-depth case studies offered in this volume. We trace evidence of why certain countries managed to establish virtuous circles and whether these changes are sustainable. In comparing results we hope to contribute to a better understanding of the paths to good governance.

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Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Mihály Fazekas

Understanding and tackling corruption is practically impossible without adequately measuring it. This chapter discusses types of corruption measurements and offers a guide on how best to design corruption measurements that match the analytical and policy goals of the investigator. By now, there is a wide variety of measurement instruments: 1) surveys of corruption perceptions and self-reported incidence of corruption; 2) administrative corruption statistics such as international bribery cases or random audits; 3) indicators of political connections or conflict of interest using administrative data and iv) corruption proxies on the micro level such as public procurement red flags. In terms of the process of setting up and using the right measurement instruments, the chapter starts by defining corruption for the purposes of measurement, goes on to offer the distinction between the universe of corruption and observation units and finally, suggests that the measurement instrument is selected to match the analytical need.

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Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Michael Johnston

Building on the process-tracing analyses in the case studies, this chapter aims to find lessons learned from the contemporary achievers examined in this volume. It first complements the studies by looking at quantitative data on the control of corruption. The chapter thus provides evidence for the connection between the degree of modernization and the control of corruption. Our analysis shows that control of corruption is a driver of economic development. It also shows clear correlations between control of corruption and other indicators for human development. However, we find no evidence that the international anti-corruption movement can claim credit for the success stories listed in this book. While structural factors such as political agency and modernization of the state prove to be significant, we cannot say the same for anti-corruption instruments such as restrictions on party finance. In contrast, we even find that some of these instruments might even prompt more illegal behavior. Finally, this chapter discusses the lessons learned from the process-tracing chapters. We do not present straightforward best practices or measures that can be applied everywhere. Rather, we identify enabling conditions and processes that supported control of corruption in the cases analyzed. Each represents a complex set of important changes which, in many cases, were not even envisioned as anti-corruption measures. We show that these virtuous cases managed to build resistance to corruption in society at large. Citizens in these countries were guided by principles of openness, effective government and accountability. Attacking specific corrupt practices will normally be a necessary aspect of reform, but it is clearly not sufficient in establishing effective control of corruption. This final chapter of the volume makes clear that the process-tracing cases presented show the complexity of the issue in hand, but also give some hope that there are societies that manage to successfully establish virtuous circles.

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Edited by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Michael Johnston

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Transitions to Good Governance

Creating Virtuous Circles of Anti-corruption

Edited by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Michael Johnston

Why have so few countries managed to leave systematic corruption behind, while in many others modernization is still a mere façade? How do we escape the trap of corruption, to reach a governance system based on ethical universalism? In this unique book, Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Michael Johnston lead a team of eminent researchers on an illuminating path towards deconstructing the few virtuous circles in contemporary governance. The book combines a solid theoretical framework with quantitative evidence and case studies from around the world. While extracting lessons to be learned from the success cases covered, Transitions to Good Governance avoids being prescriptive and successfully contributes to the understanding of virtuous circles in contemporary good governance.
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Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Paul M. Heywood

Approaches to studying corruption are hugely diverse, reflecting myriad competing understandings of what the term means and how it should be applied. Our approach looks at corruption as an issue within the science of government more generally, tracing its evolution from ‘classical’ approaches that understand corruption as a distortion of the proper purposes of government to contemporary emphases on corruption as a form of institutional equilibrium. Governance reflects a complex set of both formal and informal interactions that determine the distribution of resources, with societies that are unable to establish impersonal and merit-based systems remaining trapped in unproductive rent-seeking activities. Drawing on this approach, the introduction describes the chapter structure of the book in three parts: ‘concepts and approaches’, ‘varieties and connotations’, and ‘the anti-corruption repertory’.

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Edited by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Paul M. Heywood

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Edited by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Paul M. Heywood

This interdisciplinary Research Agenda contains state-of-the-art surveys of the field of corruption and points towards an agenda for future research. This comprehensive work covers the main approaches to diagnosing, analysing and measuring corruption, as well as the ways to tackle it. Chapters explore top political and grassroots corruption, buying and stealing votes, corruption in relation to gender and the media, digital anti-corruption and an examination of whistleblowing and market-based tools.
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Patricio Navia, Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Maira Martini

This chapter traces the historical roots of Chile’s low tolerance for corruption, and analyzes how the country has successfully remained free from significant corruption scandals despite the greater access to information and more demands for transparency that often result in uncovering corruption in areas that were previously inaccessible to the press and civil society. The economic transformations undertaken under military rule (1973–1990) and consolidated once democracy was restored in 1990 have created a stronger civil society and a freer press, and have increased demands for transparency. There is growing information on corruption scandals as the number of social and political actors has increased and there is more competition for resources and markets. As power is more widely distributed, there is less opportunity for covert corrupt practices and more pressure to end former common corrupt practices. While opportunities for corrupt practices expand with economic growth—both per capita and total GDP—tolerance for corruption has remained low and a stronger civil society has raised probity standards in the public sector.