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A Users' Guide to Measuring Corruption

2008-09-09

A Users’ Guide to Measuring Corruption is one of the first attempts to systematically explore the practical challenges and opportunities of measuring what is increasingly viewed as one of the major impediments to development: corruption. Based on a review of the literature and bolstered by more than 30 original interviews with experts in the field, A Users’ Guide provides government, civil society and the private sector with examples of “good practices” in measuring corruption.

Such practices include:

* Clearly define the unit of analysis - know what you are measuring;
* Break down ambitious goals of "measuring corruption" into more discrete and clearly defined variables;
* Focus on "actionable" data that can inform policy choices;
* Look for data that capture the voices of the poor and minority groups;
* Combine quantitative data with qualitative political-economy analysis;
* Engage national actors and use local sources of information whenever possible; and
* Be transparent in constructing a methodology for measuring corruption.

A Users' Guide also provides government officials, researchers, civil society activists and development practitioners with useful case studies illustrating how well-designed measurement exercises can inform real-life policy formulation and empower reform agendas. The case studies also highlight the challenges anti-corruption and governance practitioners commonly face including:

* The current lack of corruption metrics that are useful in day-to-day policy and programmatic work;
* The need for more disaggregated data that move beyond single-country rankings to more discrete measures within sectors and institutions; and
* The need to move beyond perceptions-based data as the basis for corruption measurement.

The guide is a joint publication of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Integrity. Funding for the guide was provided by the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre with additional support generously provided by the World Bank.

Download a PDF or order A Users' Guide to Measuring Corruption



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