Daniel Kaufmann’s Governance Matters blog comments on our recent work, A Users’ Guide to Measuring Corruption. Dr. Kaufmann is director of the World Bank’s Global Governance group.
While Daniel Kaufmann and company have previously detailed their own views on corruption metrics, we are pleased to see that on several of the key points discussed in A Users’ Guide, the Governance Matters team is in agreement with the practices advocated in the guide.
Alfredo for the World Bank’s Governance Matters blog:
Besides the multiple differences about which practices are better or worse when measuring corruption –which have already been discussed before within and outside the Bank–, there are also some agreements. I’ll mention a few of them.
First, that whether actionable, aggregate, perception… or not, there are no silver-bullet indicators or assessments that match perfectly all contexts and all needs. Second, that transparency in the methodology is crucial to understand what is being measured and what has really changed over time. Third, that even when locally owned assessments might foster reforms more effectively, there needs to be an honest buy-in by the government in question as well as a broader participation by other stakeholders. Fourth, that as the demand for more actionable indicators grows, there also needs to be an understanding that not every ‘actionable’ indicator is also ‘action-worthy,’ and that excessive emphasis on registering improvements on specific rules-based indicators of corruption leads to risks of “reform illusion” where specific rules are changed for the sole purpose of showing progress on the specific indicator.
Governance Matters: The dilemmas of measuring corruption
— Jonathan Werve