Culture and corruption in the Pacific Islands: Some conceptual issues and findings from studies of national integrity systems

Date

2006

Authors

Larmour, Peter

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Publisher

Crawford School of Economics and Government, The Australian National University

Abstract

Ideas about ‘culture' are often used to explain, or excuse, corruption. Willingness to talk, or silence, about corruption are also cultural phenomena. Social scientists often talk about corruption in different ways from policy makers and public opinion. The paper compares how 'culture' has been conceptualised in reports on 'National Integrity Systems' in 14 Pacific Island states. It identifies a number of common themes and issues in the relationship between culture and corruption including the question of gifts versus bribes, nepotism, the role of churches and the media. The paper finds differences between elite and popular opinion about corruption, and links between suspicions of corruption and ethnic divisions. It concludes with consideration of the impact of different understandings to anti-corruption practice.

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Citation

Larmour, P. (2006). Culture and corruption in the Pacific Islands: Some conceptual issues and findings from studies of national integrity systems. Policy and Governance Discussion Paper 06-05. Canberra, ACT: Crawford School of Economics and Government, The Australian National University.

Source

Type

Working/Technical Paper

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Access Statement

Open Access

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