Political Parties, Business Groups, and Corruption in Developing Countries

By Vineeta Yadav | Go to book overview
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Chapter 1

i. The figures the WEF (2003) survey obtained are representative of other studies on business perceptions of these countries. The findings showed that 69.3% rated Taiwan as satisfactory on the level of illegal corporate corruption as opposed to 30.1% in Argentina, 44.6% rated legal corruption levels by corporations as satisfactory compared to 16.2% in Argentina, while 57% in Taiwan rated public-sector corruption as being low enough to be satisfactory compared to Argentina where only 21.8% thought so.

2. See Rose-Ackerman (1999, 2006), UNDP (2001), World Bank (2006), OECD (2008), and Transparency International (2009) for discussions of various aspects of these behaviors around the world.

3. Some scholars go further and define corruption as a violation of not just legal but also social norms (Gerring and Thacker 2004, 300). However, social norms are culturally defined which makes this a difficult concept to compare internationally. Furthermore, as I discuss next, given the measurement problems inherent in measuring corruption this poses a formidable problem in quantifying corruption that results from a violation of just social norms.

4. State capture refers to “the action of individuals, groups, or firms both in the public and private sectors to influence the formation of laws, regulations, decrees, and other government policies to their own advantage” (World Bank 2000, xv). Patronage and nepotism refer to “favoritism shown to narrowly targeted interests by those in power in return for political support” (World Bank 2007,3). Bureaucratic corruption is defined as “the intentional imposition of distortions in the prescribed implementation of existing laws, rules, and regulations to provide advantages to individuals in and/or outside government through illicit, nontransparent means” (World Bank 2000, xvii).

5. Scholars have found that at the country level political or grand corruption tends to be heavily correlated with overall levels of corruption (Lambsdorff 1999). In this book, I will argue that grand and petty corruption behaviors are systemically correlated, either strongly or weakly, as a function of the type of political agent who dominates the political and policy life in a country. In countries where these behaviors are strongly correlated, corruption levels will be high, otherwise they will be low. In chapter 2, Hay out the precise causal links that lead to these distinct outcomes.

6. Some researchers have made a distinction between the use of legal and illegal lobbying tools by associating them with legal and illegal corruption. They define legal corruption as “the manipulation of formal legal processes to produce laws (and thus legally sanctioned rules) that benefit private interests at huge expense to the general public” (World Bank 2007, 9). Legal corruption therefore involves the use of legal lobbying tools, such as legal campaign


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Political Parties, Business Groups, and Corruption in Developing Countries


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