“It’s the politics, stupid!”. The politicization of anti-corruption in Italy

Authors Name(s): Salvatore Sberna, Alberto Vannucci
This article aims to analyze the relationship between judicial activism against political corruption and electoral accountability. The judiciary plays a pivotal role in enforcing anti-corruption legislation, and, in many countries, courts have moved closer and closer towards that kind of working. In the article, we analyze the conditions under which a judicial prosecution of corrupt […] Read more

Ideology, Party Systems and Corruption Voting in European Democracies

Authors Name(s): Nicholas Charron, Andreas Bågenholm
What is the impact of corruption on citizens’ voting behavior? There is a growing literature on an increasingly ubiquitous puzzle in many democratic countries: that corrupt officials continue to be re-elected by voters. In this study we address this issue with a novel theory and newly collected original survey data for 24 European countries. The […] Read more

Violence and the costs of honesty: Rethinking bureaucrats’ choice to take bribes

Authors Name(s): Sundström, Aksel
Explanations of bureaucrats’ decisions to take bribes include accounts of incentives as well as expectations. However, there are further considerations in violent contexts, where refusal of bribes may have dire consequences. Yet, insight into this topic is limited. This article investigates how violence upholds bribery, through interviews with South African officials who enforce regulations in […] Read more

The Quest for Good Governance: Uruguay’s Shift from Clientelism

Authors Name(s): Daniel Buquet, Rafael Pineiro
Uruguay improved its levels of universalism in the last fifteen years. This improvement is due to a prolonged process of transformation in Uruguayan politics from competitive particularism to an open access regime. We claim that the change in the way that parties compete for votes – from clientelistic to programmatic strategy – is the cause […] Read more

The Quest for Good Governance: Taiwan’s Fight Against Corruption

Authors Name(s): Christian Goebel
In Taiwan, the legal definition of what constitutes “corrupt” behavior and legal changes is now clearer than ever. Moreover, since the change in ruling parties, judicial independence has been guaranteed and anti-corruption agencies have been strengthened considerably. Although there is still corruption and that the institutional configuration of Taiwan’s anti-corruption agencies is far from optimum, […] Read more

The Quest for Good Governance: Georgia’s Break with the Past

Authors Name(s): Alexander Kupatadze
This paper looks at Georgia’s path to reform in 2004–2012. The author argues that the young, ideologically and structurally cohesive elite capitalized on the window of opportunity and implemented “big bang” reform in 2004–2008. As time passed, the new incumbents developed vested interests that became apparent with the reemergence of a state-business nexus reemerged in […] Read more

Learning from Virtuous Circles

Authors Name(s): Alina Mungiu-Pippidi
Once of interest mainly to specialists, the problem of explaining how institutions change is now a primary concern not only of economists, but of the international donor community as well. Many have come to believe that political institutions are decisive in shaping economic institutions and, with them, the course of innovation and investment that leads […] Read more

Political Control of Bureaucracies as an Incentive for Political Party Behavior

Authors Name(s): Marcia Grimes and Agnes Cornell
This paper examines theoretically and empirically the institutional conditions relevant to political linkage strategies between voters and parties. More specifically, we analyze whether and the extent to which the public administration is politically controlled affects political parties’ linkage strategies, whether clientelistic or programmatic. Political parties and their leaders are of crucial importance in democratic polities, […] Read more