Corralling Corruption in the EU

By Uwe Klapproth and Ann Longmore-Etheridge


Another area of potential corruption is the EU political system. One successful antifraud and anticorruption initiative is the Crinis Project, a joint project of Transparency International and the Carter Center. Crinis focuses on transparency, which is increased by reporting financial accounts related to campaign contributions to an EU nation’s election management body (EMB), as well as on public disclosure. Field interviews are conducted by the Crinis Project with key political actors, including political party accountants, elected politicians, electoral judges, watchdog groups, EMB auditors, and businesspeople to identify areas in need of reform.

The results of the Crinis Project are given to the participating country, and Transparency International then uses the information to work with government institutions, political parties, potential candidates, and donors to advocate for reform and increased transparency.

Other organizations that work to prevent corrupt behaviors pertaining to political influence include the World Bank, which has several anticorruption initiatives that are outlined in the Governance and Anticorruption Implementation Plan of 2007, and the World Economic Forum, which has partnered with the International Chamber of Commerce, Transparency International, and the UN Global Compact in the Partnering Against Corruption Initiative. This initiative calls for zero tolerance of bribery and the development of practical and effective implementation programs, as well as the curtailment of political contributions by businesses and their employees or intermediaries; the transparency of all contributions and sponsorships to charities; the elimination of facilitation payments; and the prohibition of gifts, hospitality, or expense coverage whenever these might affect—or be perceived to affect—the outcome of a procurement or business transaction.

While corruption can never be eliminated completely, all of these efforts combined can help to keep it from becoming endemic.

Uwe Klapproth, CFE, is external lecturer of white-collar crime and corruption at Graz University of Technology, Graz, Austria. He has written several published articles focusing on fighting corruption and was on the team of the KPMG Fraud Survey 2010 in Germany. He has served as police detective in the field of white-collar crime.



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