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The role of civil society organisations in countering transnational corruption

Civil society organisations (CSOs) can help to prevent, detect, investigate cases of transnational corruption and advocate for addressing systemic loopholes, improve standards and rules, and strengthen institutions. Several factors such as the freedom of press, ability to cooperate with other CSOs and intergovernmental organisations, open data, and sustainable funding facilitates this anti-corruption work.

22 May 2024
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The role of civil society organisations in countering transnational corruption

Main points

  • Civil society organisations (CSOs) have an important role in demanding accountability from governments and serving as a link between citizens and decision-makers.
  • As part of measures to counter transnational corruption, CSOs can help to drive policy reform, generate evidence, provide technical expertise and capacity-building and be involved in the investigation and enforcement of transnational corruption cases.
  • Some CSOs advocate for change on the standards, rules and practices to curb transnational corruption. Others have published data on corporate ownership and politically exposed persons (PEPs) to support the work of investigative journalists tracking illicit finance.
  • Enabling conditions for CSOs to successfully counter transnational corruption include an open civic space, freedom of press for investigative journalists, sustainable funding, open data the opportunity to collaborate with decision-makers, and collaborations of cross-national networks and in-country networks working on anti-corruption.

Cite this publication


Maslen, C.; (2024) The role of civil society organisations in countering transnational corruption. Bergen: U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute (U4 Helpdesk Answer 2024:21)

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All views in this text are the author(s)’, and may differ from the U4 partner agencies’ policies.

This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

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