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Programme Papers from the 9th IACC
past IACCs



The 9th International Anti-Corruption Conference

The Papers

Abstracts of presentations

Day 1, Workshop 4,

Cave, Shane:
Cultivating Transparency

While corruption is difficult to combat because of its secrecy and the frequent support of powerful interests, there are always groups in society which have a powerful professional interest in fighting corruption. These include honest financial professionals, such as those who offer banking services and financial advice and administer multilateral and bilateral development agencies, as well as journalists, for whom corruption stories are very attractive. Thus, the two groups have a mutual interest in the public exposure of corruption, but are often suspicious of each other. Such suspicion impedes the development of a transparent culture and perpetuates the closed environments in which corruption can most easily prosper. It is possible that a more transparent culture can be cultivated by bringing together small numbers of individuals from the two groups, to allow them to get to know each other and understand the constraints under which the other works.

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Coronel, Sheila:
Using Information and Media to Strengthen Public and Private Accountability: The Role of Investigative Reporting Corruption in the Philippines

The paper provides an overview of why investigative reporting is important in fighting corruption, what techniques are used, what the benefits are for the media industry in supporting investigations, and what is needed to provide an atmosphere conducive to good investigative reporting.

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Dixit, Kunda:
Media in the Time of Kleptocracy

For something to be considered "news" it must be New, Negative, and Near and North (or to do with the rich). Corruption is often not interesting for the media in South Asia because it is perceived to be so common as not to be new; some do not even consider it a negative. In order to make corruption "news", the media needs think locally, acting as a communication channel to make links between the lack of local goods and services and the embezzlement at higher political levels. Radio is an ideal medium, which has been largely under-utilised. The aid "industry" is also in need of investigation. To be more proactive, media itself needs to change. It needs to be much more in-depth, analytical and investigative. Journalism schools have traditionally advocated a stand-off role for the media. Somewhere along the line we have lost our anger, and we have lost our passion to dig. Part of this is to offer hope through publicising success stories and alternative options.

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Paragon Regional Governance Programme (PRGP):
Participatory Action Research to Advance Governance Options and Networks

Sustainable human development increases choice. Humane governance strengthens the enabling environment for sustainable human development. There are no set formulas for realising these objectives. Societal action learning is required. The Paragon Regional Governance Programme will develop governance policy options for the following components : Rights and development, public and private sector accountability, and decentralisation and local empowerment. Action areas with strong synergies vis-à-vis these components and each other are: freedom of information and transparency; parliamentary, judicial, governmental, media, and civil society oversight mechanisms; contracting and procurement systems; local financial capacity; humane governance training; and, indices and indicators for benchmarking advances in governance. Participatory action research activities include policy analysis and advocacy, implementation support for innovative governance projects, and learning experience case studies. Within each national and sub-regional context, as well as at the regional level, a small set of components, action areas and activities will be selected. These will be undertaken and utilised by parliamentarians and media personnel committed to work for humane governance for sustainable human development, as well as by other individual and institutional change agents.

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Toleafoa, Afamasaga Faamatala:
Capturing the voice of the People through Parliament And Civil Society Organizations: Ensuring Transparency and Integrity in Governance

On of the central roles of Parliament is to be a pivotal part of democracy's system of checks and balances, providing a countervailing and monitoring function, to ensure compliance with laws and regulations, and integrity, transparency and accountability on the part of Government and governance institutions. When Parliament fails to effectively perform this monitoring role, experience has shown that the level of accountability and integrity in Government and in public life declines to the detriment of the people. Parliament itself must show integrity and be fully accountable for members entitlements and will need to institute and implement for itself adequate and stringent self-regulatory rules and procedures that deal with issues of transparency in Parliament itself. Adequate remuneration, training, support services and regular networking among Parliamentarians of different countries can all help to raise the standard of leadership and integrity of Parliamentarians. The independence of Parliament from the Government of the day must be safeguarded.

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Van Ham, Margit:
Journalists for Integrity

Investigative journalism needs further strengthening and encouragement as an important element of awareness raising against corruption. There is a need for approaches which go beyond the investigation of actual corruption cases. Efforts of civil society, reform-willing governments or single institutions and businesses need to find much more reflection in media publications in order to convince the public that corruption can be fought. It is proposed to form a pool of committed journalists - Journalists for Integrity - who would be partners for civil society organisations on the national and international level. It is proposed to start with such an initiative in Asia.

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Report on regional seminar on Parliament and Good Governance: Towards a new agenda for strengthening accountability in South Asia

Parliamentarians and representatives of civil society from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka attended the Regional Seminar on Parliament and Good Governance in Dhaka, Bangladesh, from 19-24 March, 1999. Participants agreed on the critical importance of strengthening parliaments throughout South Asia as institutions of accountability and good governance. Towards that objective, the Seminar adopted the following concrete recommendations: 1.Strengthen Parliament; 2.Strengthen Civil Society; 3.Reform the Electoral System; 4.Reform Political Parties; 5.Establish an Anti-Corruption Agency; 6. Strengthen Watchdog Bodies and the Judiciary; 7. Make International Financial Institutions/Donors More Accountable.

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