Handbook on Corruption, Ethics and Integrity in Public Administration
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Handbook on Corruption, Ethics and Integrity in Public Administration

Edited by Adam Graycar

This timely Handbook unpacks the underlying common factors that give rise to corrupting environments. Investigating opportunities to deliver ethical public policy, it explores global trends in public administration and its vulnerability to corruption today, as well as proposing strategies for building integrity and diminishing corruption in public sectors around the globe.
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Chapter 20: Corruption, organized crime and the public sector in Mexico

Bonnie J. Palifka


This chapter provides a broad overview of corruption and anti-corruption in Mexico. Mexico is a microcosm in which many types of corruption flourish, despite official anti-corruption positions. As part of a transition to democracy in 2000, centralized corruption devolved into decentralized corruption, such that Mexico is now in a vicious spiral of corruption, delegitimization of government, organized crime and violence. This vicious spiral has enabled organized crime to control 80 per cent of Mexican municipalities, putting this Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development country on the verge of becoming a failed state. In response to international commitments and the escalation of corruption, Mexico has created the National Anti-corruption System (NAS), which incorporates best anti-corruption practices, including transparency, cooperation and citizen oversight. The NAS is still incomplete, but already shows both promise and the difficulties of overcoming systemic corruption. Thus, Mexico offers lessons in corruption and anti-corruption.

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