The Guardian article gives a case study on the corruption in post-apartheid South Africa. Private individuals and companies have commandeered organs of state to redirect public resources into their own hands, and have gutted those institutions responsible for protecting the country against such corruption. These individuals and companies use bribery as underground means as well as donations to the party or running and staffing as above board means.
It seems like corruption pervades all levels of the state in Mexico, creating an environment where all kinds of crimes can thrive. A lot of the readings focus on addressing this issue and imply that citizens lose faith in their society’s institutions because citizens fall victim to violent crimes and watch their governments do nothing to stop them. My question will be: (although systematic corruption cannot be beaten merely through the enactment of some legislative instruments) is there any chance that the corruption level in Mexico can be lowered?
A substantial number of policy and administrative reforms were attempted in India during the 1990s and early 2000s in response to failures of state and national governments to translate economic growth into social and eco- nomic well-being for the majority of citizens. Many of these reforms con- centrated on making the government more responsive to citizen demands and more transparent in its operations. Indian has used several potential of technology-enabled service reforms to improve the quality of service delivery in general to reduce the prevalence of corruption in service delivery.
This chapter used a lot of country cases to illustrate that the eradication of corrupt practices needs 1. political will, 2. legal framework, 3. educated and brave population, 4. free media, 5. enthusiastic ombudsmen and auditors general, 6. a national commission, 7. independent judiciary, 8. diligent prosecutors or attorneys. Although it seems impossible to fulfill the whole list of anti-corruption actions, countries like Singapore did manage to reduce corruption level radically. But for a lot of developing countries, corruption has been part of their economic system. Even though the author tells all these countries what to do, I feel these countries will either be reluctant to follow these guidelines, or only do the surface work.
Corruption and Development: Not what you think gives us a new way of thinking about corruption, that is corruption does not matter a lot for development. The author mentions that corruption can also grease the wheels of prosperity in countries where bureaucracies and organizations are inefficient, since bribery can make the government provide better services for those who have highest opportunity cost of waiting. Also he talks that corruption is a symptom of a deeper problem and not a cause of poverty itself, so that fighting for corruption is only a distraction from the real issue.
From Merit, Tenure, and Bureaucratic Behavior: Evidence From a Conjoint Experiment in the Dominican Republic, Schuster and Oliveros concluded that merit based recruitment (examination) enhances the quality of bureaucracy, in this case, enhancing work motivation, lowering corruption, and also enhances the democracy (electoral competition). Job stability, however, only enhances the quality of democracy. Because merit based selection creates a more politically neutral public service, which will be less likely to help parties with electoral efforts.