Ethics and corruption in education

Financial embezzlement linked to the building of schools or purchase of school equipment, favouritism in recruitment or promotion of teachers: corruption has not spared the education sector. Fighting these practices enables governments to strengthen their educational systems: a precondition for the attainment of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, part of which includes quality education for all. Discover all of IIEP-UNESCO’s actions, activities, and resources relating to these issues.

This programme, initiated in 2001, aims to strengthen planning strategies to develop a culture of ethics and fight corruption in the education sector, by integrating the principles of transparency and accountability at the political level. With the benefit of the Institute’s research and experience in this field, our experts support UNESCO Member States in strengthening their skills in these areas, through in-country training programmes and technical support missions.

Ethics and anti-corruption strategies: Our training courses

IIEP regularly offers training courses on transparency, accountability, and the fight against corruption, most often in response to requests from UNESCO Member States, development partners, or civil society organizations.
In total, more than 2,600 people have been trained by IIEP since 2003 in various subjects related to ethics and corruption in education.
One of our training programmes is an eight-week online course launched in September 2020 on the theme of ‘Transparency, accountability and measures for fighting corruption in education’.

Find out more about the Ethics and Corruption training course.


Residential training courses and study trips

Our specialists in ethics and corruption in education deliver tailor-made training in countries that request it. They also organize study trips to foster the sharing of experiences between countries. A few recent examples:

  • Training seminar on ‘Integrity, ethics, and measures to fight corruption in higher education’, in Uzbekistan.
  • Study trips to Switzerland with political officials from Kosovo*1 and Montenegro, on the theme of integrity in higher education.
  • Study trip to Australia for delegations from seven Asian countries, around the My School initiative.

Access the training content on ethics and anti-corruption strategies developed by IIEP.

1 All references to Kosovo are made in the context of UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999).

Fighting corruption in education: Our research

IIEP leads a series of research programmes to document efficient strategies for promoting transparency and accountability in the areas of educational planning and management.

Our recent projects and research findings

Access almost 30 IIEP publications on the theme of Ethics and corruption in education.

Education and corruption: How does IIEP promote political dialogue at the international level?

To facilitate the sharing of methodological tools, strategies, and good practice among researchers and political decision-makers in education, IIEP has had the opportunity to organize or participate in fora relating to the fight against corruption in education. These include:

International political forum, Using open school data to combat corruption, in Manila, the Philippines.
Educational policy forum, Integrity planning in higher education, in Paris, France.

The Institute also shares its research findings at events such as the Global Anti-Corruption & Integrity Forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) or the International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC).


Our technical support to States

Integrity evaluations, conception of codes of conduct or the implementation of public expenditure tracking surveys: IIEP offers concrete solutions to help UNESCO Member States fight corruption in education.

Evaluation of the risks of corruption in education

IIEP carries out exhaustive evaluations of the risks of corruption in the education sector of a given country, including in the areas of pre-school, primary, secondary, and higher education, as well as technical and vocational training (TVET). Based on its experience, IIEP has developed its own methodology to adapt to the context of each country. A few examples of integrity evaluations:


Public expenditure tracking surveys

IIEP contributes to strengthening the capacity of national teams to conceive and implement public expenditure tracking surveys. The objective is to trace funding flows intended for education and measure the rate of waste.

South Africa, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Ghana and Uganda have benefited from the Institute’s support on these issues.

Find out more

Teacher codes of conduct

The Institute offers support to UNESCO Member States involved in the process of launching or revising their teacher codes of conduct. A few examples:

  • Support for the creation and implementation of a teacher code of conduct in Kuwait.
  • Support for the drafting of a code of conduct in Laos.

Access the teacher codes of conduct of almost 80 countries via our interactive map.



ETICO online platform

All the resources produced and collected by IIEP are brought together on the thematic platform dedicated to ethics and corruption in education, ETICO. Conceived as a dynamic database, it offers information, tools and resources in three languages – English, French, and Spanish – intended for anyone interested in issues of transparency and accountability in the education sector