Corruption of Legitimacy

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“The debate on corruption is truly difficult and complicated. Even though we should be pleased that such an index exists, I am worried that the mere fact that we are trying to reduce corruption to terms of a measurable dimension may lead us to oversimplify the problem dangerously.

The index, in principle, only measures the perception of corruption in general terms. This is defined in ample terms as “the abuse of public office for private gain.” In this sense, and because of the nature of the problem, I am sure that when using the term “gain” we are referring mostly to a monetary benefit. This avoids measuring other aspects of corruption that could be just as important or more.

For instance, I believe that the appointment of someone to public office for reasons other than his or her capacity or professional integrity is a corruption that is even more pernicious and costly to the country than the sum of all monetary corruption put together.”

Per Kurowski, former World Bank Executive Director, in his book, “Voice and Noise”, pp.98-9.

By focusing too much on the economic measurement of corruption, we might be forgetting the real cause of corruption in the first place; ruling elite may not have any popular legitimacy in the first place.

Related;
- Mr. Githongo goes to Washington
- Excessive Anti-Corruption Drive Hurting the Economy?

Note: the photo I stole from this post at Mahalanobis

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This page contains a single entry by Paul published on May 16, 2006 11:37 PM.

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