Big data analytics as a tool for auditors to identify and prevent fraud and corruption in public procurement

Adam, I. & Fazekas, M. (2019). Big data analytics as a tool for auditors to identify and prevent fraud and corruption in public procurement. European Court of Auditors Journal 2/2019: pp. 172-179.

ECA Journal Short Read:

Government contracts and big data analytics – big data in public procurement can help auditors on two levels: (1) it can facilitate decisions about monitoring, audit and investigations; (2) it can inform country or sector-wide policy decisions on resource allocation and regulations.

Measuring corruption requires a proxy – a ‘corruption risk index’ (CRI) has been developed, combining four observable risk indicators: (1) tendering risk; …

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Single bidding and non-competitive tendering procedures in EU co-funded projects

Fazekas, M. (2019). Single bidding and non-competitive tendering procedures in EU co-funded projects. Brussels: European Commission Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy.

Transparency, efficiency and competition in public procurement are essential for ensuring sound investments resulting in concrete benefits for both businesses and citizens. The 7th Cohesion Report pointed out that open and transparent public procurement is essential to promote development and reward the most efficient firms. However, the use of open procedures, the intensity of competition and the speed of decision-making as well as the risk of corruption varies markedly between regions.

In particular, single bidding, or procurement …

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Agency Design, Favoritism and Procurement in the United States

Dahlström, C., Fazekas, M., & Lewis, D. E. (2019). Agency Design, Favoritism and Procurement in the United States. QoG Working Paper Series 2019:4, ISSN 1653-8919.

The U.S. federal government spends huge sums buying goods and services from outside of the public sector. Given the sums involved, strategic government purchasing can have electoral consequences. In this paper, we suggest that more politicized agencies show favoritism to entrepreneurs in key electoral constituencies and to firms connected to political parties. We evaluate these claims using new data on United States government contracts between 2003 and 2015. We find that executive departments, particularly more

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Auction Length and Prices: Evidence from Random Auction Closing in Brazil

Oliveira, A., Fabregas Masllovet, A. & Fazekas, M. (2019). Auction Length and Prices : Evidence from Random Auction Closing in Brazil (English). Policy Research working paper; no. WPS 8828. Washington, D.C.: World Bank Group. 

Electronic reverse auctions are the most used competitive method for procurement of goods and non-consulting services by the Federal Government of Brazil. These auctions are closed randomly, which perfectly satisfies fairness considerations but may be suboptimal from an efficiency perspective. There are concerns that tenders are closed too early and randomness favors bidders with algorithmic bidding software, leading to high prices. Hence, this paper investigates what …

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Analytics for Integrity: Enhancing Integrity Risk Assessments through Data-Driven Approaches

OECD (2019). Analytics for Integrity: Enhancing Integrity Risk Assessments through Data-Driven Approaches. Available at: https://www1.oecd.org/gov/ethics/analytics-for-integrity.pdf

Effective risk management in infrastructure projects relies on strategic and robust risk assessments in order for managers to identify risks and adapt controls to mitigating them. Risk assessments are often qualitative, relying on observations of employees and experts involved in the projects. To complement these perception-based approaches, those responsible for managing risks in infrastructure—project managers, procurement officials and risk managers—can take advantage of data analytics to further isolate risks and ensure they calibrate control activities appropriately. Doing so, requires investments and planning, and avoiding ad …

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