Corruption negatively impacts social and economic development as well as environmental sustainability. It also undermines the ability of companies to grow, escalates costs and poses legal and reputational risks, making it of crucial importance to business. Anti-Corruption is an important part of all the Sustainable Development Goals, but in particular relates to Goal 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.
This one pager provides a brief overview of the different projects and resources available on the topic of Anti-Corruption by the United Nations Global Compact. The second part outlines a range of ways that academic institutions can get involved in these projects.
The Global Compact’s 10th Principle states that “Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.” It is derived from the United Nations Convention against Corruption, which introduces a comprehensive set of standards, measures and rules that all countries can apply in order to strengthen their legal and regulatory regimes to fight corruption. The Global Compact provides a guide – Business Against Corruption: Framework for Action – to help companies to implement the 10th Principle, which includes details as to why companies should proactively express their commitment to corporate responsibility and engage actively in anti-corruption activities.
In recent years, the UN Global Compact has put a focus on Collective Action – a process of cooperation between various stakeholders with the aim of jointly countering corruption. Collective Action is about companies, governments, civil society organizations and educational institutions joining forces in order to guarantee transparency in business and create fair and equal market conditions for all market players. Some examples of collective action include integrity pacts, anti-corruption declarations, certifying business coalitions, principle-based initiatives as well as education and training. Several resources exist that resulted from a four year project in Brazil, Egypt, India, Nigeria and South Africa exploring how to facilitate ongoing dialogue between the private and public sectors, scale up existing anti-corruption efforts, provide training and create new anti-corruption incentives and initiatives. A Practical Guide for Collective Action against Corruption provides an overview of a range of applications of the Collective Action concept in different business sectors and regions.
The Anti-Corruption Call to Action calls on government to fully implement and enforce the tenets of the UN Convention against Corruption, to make a commitment to reduce corruption risks from procurement and contract processes, to commit to engage in competitive and transparent procurement processes, to achieve greater transparency in relation to revenues received by Governments from private sector companies, and to support corporate efforts to enhance anti-corruption implementation. The Call has been signed by over 250 companies and investors worldwide.
Another resource is the that connects with the work done by the Global Compact but is organized by two separate agencies, the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 2015, is the Break the Corruption Chain campaign, part of the International Anti-Corruption Day organized yearly on December 9th. Their site offers a range of interesting resources that can be used in the classroom, including a comprehensive 2 page summary of all the ways different groups (government, policy makers, NGOs, business) can help break the chain of corruption in their everyday lives.
There is also a range of additional resources on the UN Global Compact site that explore Anti-Corruption in specific areas, including:
- A Guide for Anti-Corruption Risk Assessment
- Fighting Corruption in Sport Sponsorship and Sport Related Hospitality: A Practical Guide for Companies
- A Practical Guide to Help Prevent Corruption in the Supply Chain as well as a related Webinar Recording and Slides