IIEP contributes to G20 debates on corruption

03 December 2014

The fight against corruption was featured high on the G20 agenda in Brisbane (15-16 November 2014). “High-level principles on corruption and growth” were discussed by the Anti-Corruption Working Group, which was established in 2010 “in recognition of the significant impact of corruption on economic growth, trade and development”.

An analytical study on Consequences of corruption at the sector level and implications for economic growth and development prepared by the OECD, in collaboration with the World Bank Group, was used as a basis for discussions among G20 members. This study focused on four major sectors: education, health, infrastructure, and extractive industries.

IIEP is author of the study’s chapter on education, drawing from the wealth of information collected as part of its programme on Ethics and corruption in education. (For more details, consult the ETICO platform of resources). In its contribution, IIEP highlighted that: 

  • “It has been estimated that developing countries could improve their GNP per capita by 5% if they were to base their leadership upon (true) qualifications, as opposed to gender, social status or contacts” (Hallak & Poisson, 2007). 
  • Among the listed factors linking corruption in education to economic growth is the lower value for money due to inefficient utilization of public resources, and fewer people trained because of the amount of resources. A lower level of qualifications and performance of workers affects productivity (…). 
  • Corruption in education not only contributes to the preparation of unqualified young professionals, but also distorts recruitment processes to influential positions in society, and to a selection mechanism of the elite sector, while it corrodes trust in governments”.   

The G20 Anti-Corruption Working Group (ACWG) welcomed the analytical study prepared by the OECD, that “demonstrates the ongoing value of anti-corruption efforts” towards the achievement of “the G20’s growth targets”. It formulated seven Principles to outline ways in which corruption is a severe impediment to economic growth, which were endorsed by G20 countries in Brisbane. These Principles will underlie the forthcoming G20 2015-16 Anti-Corruption Action Plan.

In its conclusions, the G20 ACWG stated that “The G20 has both the capacity and responsibility to create a global culture of intolerance to corruption, and to forcefully tackle its drivers and manifestations”.