U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre

This Anti-Corruption Helpdesk brief was produced in response to a query from a U4 Partner Agency. The U4 Helpdesk is operated by Transparency International in collaboration with the U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre based at the Chr. Michelsen Institute.

Query

Please provide examples of successful efforts to advance anti-corruption reforms through the mobilisation of broad coalitions across civil society, the private sector and government. Specific examples from the Asia-Pacific region would be appreciated.

Purpose

Noting that the effectiveness of anti-corruption reforms relies upon local ownership and coalition building amongst stakeholders, we are particularly interested in any advice or success stories that may be available.

Content

1. Examples of multi-stakeholder anti-corruption coalitions
2. Challenges involved in mobilising anti-corruption coalitions
3. Lessons learnt in mobilising broad-based anti-corruption coalitions
4. References

Summary

Building multi-stakeholder coalitions against corruption is emerging as a very promising approach to mobilise broad-based political will, strengthen civil society and support citizens demand for accountability. A number of lessons can be drawn from the experience of Transparency International, Coalition 2000 in Bulgaria, the National Anti-Corruption Forum in South Africa, as well as from sectoral multi-stakeholder initiatives such as the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), the Medicine Transparency Alliance (MeTA) or the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative (CoST).

At the country level, there is no blueprint for stetting up broad-based anti-corruption coalitions, as the building process strongly depends on the local circumstances, including the political context and the space available for civil society. Besides political and operational challenges, initiatives in all countries face major obstacles of sustainability, including the need to secure the long term collaboration of stakeholders with very different and at times irreconcilable agendas, operating logics and patterns of incentives.

Successful coalitions have managed to address some of these challenges by adopting a non-confrontational/non-partisan approach, promoting clarity of purpose, mission and agenda and providing a diverse and comprehensive set of incentives to the various stakeholders. Careful planning with strong leadership and effective operating and management structures also contribute to building consensus on internal and programmatic issues. Four stages of the coalition building process - formation, credibility, expansion and transformation - emerge.

Authors

Marie Chêne, Transparency International, mchene@transparency.org

Date

01/11/2010

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