Anti-corruption interventions in development aid: Is corruption reduced or merely displaced?

Dávid-Barrett, E., Fazekas, M. (2018): Anti-corruption interventions in development aid: Is corruption reduced or merely displaced? GTI-WP/2018:02, Budapest: Government Transparency Institute

Most anti-corruption interventions are small-scale and targeted. Hence, there is a risk that they simply displace corruption rather than reducing it as corrupt actors adapt to the new conditions. Direct attempts at improving corruption controls in one area might elicit two evasive tactics: corrupt actors could shift focus to areas with weaker controls or could more aggressively exploit the loopholes that remain. Observing such displacement effects requires an overview of a whole system and detailed data points within it, …

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Institutional quality, campaign contributions, and favouritism in US federal government contracting

Fazekas, M., Ferrali, R., Wachs, J. (2018): Institutional quality, campaign contributions, and favouritism in US federal government contracting. GTI-WP/2018:01, Budapest: Government Transparency Institute.

The corrupting power of money in US politics has long been debated with emerging evidence pointing out that campaign contributions help funnel money to politically connected companies. However, it is yet unclear how exactly such mechanisms might work and what are the curbs on politically driven contracting. To address these gaps we compile the full dataset of published federal contracts and registered campaign contributions for 2004-2015, linked to each other on the company level. We develop corruption …

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Assessing the quality of government at the regional level using public procurement data

Fazekas, M. (2017):  Assessing the quality of government at the regional level using public procurement data. European Commission Working Papers WP 12/2017. Available online: http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/information/publications/working-papers/2017/assessing-the-quality-of-government-at-the-regional-level-using-public-procurement-data

Public procurement, that is the purchase of goods and services by public entities, plays a crucial role in the development and quality of government across the European Union (EU). On average, it amounts to about 13 % of GDP or 29 % of government spending (European Commission, 2016; OECD, 2015). It is a genuinely cross-cutting government function concerning virtually every public body from federal ministries to local state-owned utilities, making it broadly representative of the …

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The effectiveness of the European Union in safeguarding competition in public procurement markets

Fazekas, M., Tóth, B. (2017):  The effectiveness of the European Union in safeguarding competition in public procurement markets. GTI-WP/2017:04, Budapest: Government Transparency Institute.

The EU’s single market in government purchases constitutes a fundamental pillar of economic integration throughout the continent, as it amounts to 4% of GDP. If competition is deficient efficiency losses ensue. As we know surprisingly little about the effectiveness of monitoring and enforcement institutions designed to safeguard competition, we investigate whether the European Commission and the Court of Justice of the European Union are effective in changing market behaviour. Using a unique micro-level public procurement database of …

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Controlling Corruption in Development Aid: New Evidence from Contract-Level Data

Dávid-Barrett, E., Fazekas, M., Hellmann, O., Márk, L., McCorley, C. (2017):  Controlling Corruption in Development Aid:  New Evidence from Contract-Level Data. GTI-WP/2017:03, Budapest: Government Transparency Institute.

Following scandals about corruption in foreign aid, and in a political climate that increasingly questions the legitimacy of development assistance, donors are under pressure to control how their funds are spent. At the same time, they also face pressure to trust recipient governments to disburse project funds themselves, so as to build capacity in developing countries. This paper assesses under which conditions donor regulations are successful in controlling corruption in aid spent by national …

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