U4 Issue | Public financial management

Sitting on the Fence: Conflicts of Interest and How to Regulate Them

By Quentin Reed
Bergen: Chr. Michelsen Institute (U4 Issue 2008:6) 27 p.

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This paper describes the problem of conflict of interest of public officials and the main ways in which it may be tackled, with particular focus on regulation of elected officials. The paper describes three main types of regulation - prohibitions on activities, declarations of interests, and exclusion from decision-making processes - and how these may be best implemented in practice. The author underlines the need for regulation to be realistic, tailored specifically for different categories of officials and to the specific circumstances of the country in which they are to be applied. The author also suggests possibilities for the engagement of the donor community, in line with the implementation of the UN Convention Against Corruption.

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