Corruption and Aid

No aid modality, agency or recipient is free from corruption risks. Find resources on the scope and nature of these risks and how they can be identified and addressed.

Concern about possible corruption in aid flows and projects has grown with increased pressure on donor aid budgets and greater attention to aid effectiveness. Not every donor, recipient or project will be equally exposed to corrupt practices; the context, modalities, choice of partners, and systems for detection all affect risk levels. Equally important is how aid providers respond and how they promote integrity from within.

 Among the resources in this U4 Theme Page you will:


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Nils Taxell

Senior Advisor

+47 47938075

Interview with Steve Berkman, author of World Bank and the Gods of Lending,

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Author: Kaufmann, D.
Release date: February 2009

Aid Effectiveness and Governance: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

This special report argues that the new world reality, following the financial crisis, forces us to think again, and signals the end of the “business as usual” era. It goes on to say that the official aid industry was already behind the curve prior to the crisis and that now the catching up that is required is vaster, necessitating a rethinking of aid strategies and the approach to aid effectiveness. There is a need for concrete attention to governance and political corruption, to the IT revolution, free media, and innovations in public-private partnerships. It is also paramount to take in the reality of the new role in aid of non-traditional official donors as well as that of private donors.

Author: Kolstad, I, Fritz, V and O
Release date: January 2008

Corruption, Anti-corruption Efforts and Aid: Do Donors Have the Right Approach?

This paper is an output from a two-year research project on the linkages between Good Governance, New Aid Modalities and Poverty Reduction for the Advisory Board for Irish Aid. The desire to improve aid effectiveness has meant that both governance and aid modalities have moved to the centre of development debates during the past decade. This has also led to corruption becoming more prominent in donor policies and programmes. This paper reviews the literature on corruption, anti-corruption efforts and aid, with a focus on: (i) tools for measuring corruption; (ii) the social science literature on the country-level causes of corruption and its relationship to poor governance; (iii) donor approaches to reducing corruption - both specific anti-corruption interventions and broader governance measures; and (iv) the debates and evidence on aid modalities and corruption.


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