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

Is there a recommended sequencing for relevant anti-corruption laws and reforms in a country?

Purpose

The query attempts to consider how better to incorporate preventative policies against corruption as part of law enforcement efforts that commonly cover punitive measures once problems are detected. This information will be used as part of second generation reforms in Indonesia as its anti-corruption commission (KPK) considers how to most effectively direct its work.

Content

Part 1: Good Law Enforcement: Preventing and Punishing the Problem
Part 2: Sequencing Anti-corruption Reforms
Part 3: The Case of Indonesia
Part 4: Further Reading

Caveat

The query looks at changes proposed to Indonesia’s anti-corruption commission and how to help it better address corruption, both through preventative and punitive measures that are better sequenced. As such, specific emphasis is given to preventative and punitive actions taken by anti-corruption commissions (ACCs) as well as their sequencing. In compiling the query, however, limited information on sequencing was found, suggesting that this is an area worthy of further research by the anti-corruption community.

Summary

Donor-supported approaches to address corruption have tended to focus on measures that support effective law enforcement in a country that are strategically sequenced. In many cases, independent oversight bodies and mechanisms, including anti-corruption commissions (ACCs), have formed a key part of the changes. ACCs have been seen as important actors in ensuring laws are upheld and cases are prosecuted.

For ACCs, the challenge is that they must work within the system that they were set up to oversee. While they may be able to investigate and sanction corruption, they may not be preventing the underlying problem. This is related to the concern that governments must create a supportive context for anti-corruption enforcement.

However, this landscape is often missing when oversight bodies such as ACCs are established. In response, governments and donors have tried to work together to properly sequence anti-corruption reforms to build a more favourable environment. Experience has shown that there is no one-size-fits-all approach for sequencing. Understanding the local context – in this case, Indonesia – is the best way to begin the process.

Authors

Craig Fagan, Transparency International, cfagan@transparency.org

Date

01/11/2011

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