Expert Highlights Imp'tance of Reliable Indicators & Verifiable Benchmarks in Corruption Control
July 23, 2009--Manila, Philippines-- Michael Johnston, Charles A. Dana Professor of Political Science at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, gave a talk entitled “Beyond Perceptions: Measuring Vulnerabilities to Corruption” at a public seminar held at the AIM Conference Center. The seminar was jointly organized by The Asia Foundation and the Hills Program on Governance of the Asian Institute of Management. The event was attended by individuals from government, civil society, business, academe, and media.
In his talk, Professor Johnston highlighted the need to develop indicators to assess vulnerabilities to corruption by moving away from the usual perception-based indices. “To attack specific, embedded corruption problems, and to demonstrate the effects of controls to officials, political backers, citizens and possible malefactors, reform advocates need sensitive, unobtrusive, and easily understood assessment tools,” said Mr. Johnston. By using comparative examples from various countries, he emphasized how this specific strategy will provide opportunities for citizen’s participation and oversight in governance.
"The approach proposed by Professor Johnston would allow for a more meaningful assessment of what is and what is not working in the country's efforts to combat corruption and to improve governance generally," said Atty. Angela Garcia, Executive Director of Hills Program on Governance, AIM.
Dr. Steven Rood, Country Representative of The Asia Foundation noted how this effort will strengthen ongoing efforts in developing a fact-based approach towards constructing an anticorruption reform agenda. “We need to go beyond anecdotes and stories about particular scandals to have a more systematic approach to combating corruption.”
For over 30 years, Mr. Johnston has taught lecture-courses on political corruption, conducted research on corruption and development issues, and taken part in the implementation of various reform efforts in different countries. Professor Johnston’s recent book, Syndromes of Corruption: Wealth, Power, and Democracy, won the 2009 Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order.
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Download Document, " Assessing Vulnerabilities to Corruption: Indicators and Benchmarks of Government Performance" by Prof. Michael Johnston".