Handbook on the Geographies of Corruption
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Handbook on the Geographies of Corruption

Edited by Barney Warf

The Handbook on the Geographies of Corruption offers a comprehensive overview of how corruption varies across the globe. It explores the immense range of corruption among countries, and how this reflects levels of wealth, the centralization of power, colonial legacies, and different national cultures. Barney Warf presents an original and interdisciplinary collection of chapters from established researchers and leading academics that examine corruption from a spatial perspective.
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Chapter 20: An ambivalent state: the crossover of corruption and violence in the Philippines

Cleo Calimbahin


This chapter documents corruption in the Philippines. Centuries of Spanish and American colonialism led to the formation of a weak state rife with systemic corruption. The long dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos was a case study in kleptocracy. Clan-based oligarchs use a clientelistic power structure and crony capitalism that offer impunity to corrupt officials and led to an unholy marriage with organized crime. Corrupt elites and dynastic ruling families engage in widespread election fraud. More recently, Filipino corruption has taken a horrifically violent turn: President Duterte’s campaign against illegal drugs has led to the deaths of more than 7,000 people, many murdered extra-judicially.

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