The ‘new’ CPI by TI, scientifically not defendable

The ‘new’ CPI-2012 by TI, scientifically not defendable © Dr. Michel van Hulten

121226, Engl.

© Dr. Michel van Hulten, Lelystad,


The new CPI 2013 has been published. A good moment to repeat my review of the 2012 edition which made clear that on all essential counts, the methodology and the technics of making that report cannot be called satisfactory as ‘scientific’. No student of governance in the world could earn a master’s degree with this floppy work. Regretfully enough most politicians in the world, and most journalists miss the qualities to judge this product of TI-Berlin. And politicians continue to justify their policy choices on these results, journalists read them as the absolute truth on ‘how corrupt a country is’, formally speaking TI-Berlin supports that this is not a conclusion you can base on the CPI, but it is all to happy that the worldreads the ranking a such.

[This paper is a more extensive reflection on the CPI-2012 as written in the Dutch-language and placed on this website as my comments about the CPI-2012.]

The ‘new’ CPI-2012 by TI: scientifically not defendable, it is fake

(Go for the full TI-product to:


After much criticism over the years, TI decided to enhance the quality of its annual flagship-production, the Corruption Perceptions Index.

This paper shows the failure of TI to do so. Whatever changes have been made in the research methodology and technics (only minor ones), the major flaws stayed: corruption is not defined (the European Commission recently did better), perceptions instead of facts, biased samples of respondents, not more than the Anglophone anti-corruption movement is referenced, advices by TI-consultants have not been followed. The result is that the same countries are at the top of the list (clean, rich) and the same are at the bottom end (corrupt, poor).

Final conclusion: it is the input that is mud. Mud never built dykes.

Conflicting figures, rising interest

Transparency International (global) President Huguette Labelle in her keynote-address at the 12th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC-2012,, 7-10 Nov. 2012) quoted Germany as ‘one of the most robust economies in Europe, which loses 250 billion Euro to corruption in 2012’. In comparison, the amount of corrupt pay in the Netherlands, quoted in 2011 by the Dutch president of TI-Netherlands as 12 billion Euro, is negligible. (A billion is an amount written with 9 zero’s, a thousand times a million).

Some months earlier Cecilia Malmström, European Commissioner for Home Affairs (which includes fighting corruption and preserving integrity) quoted 120 billion euros as the European corruption losses. Remarkably much lower than the German figure.

First of all, the 120 billion euros figure for Europe is so much lower than the 250 billion euros as given by TI-Berlin for Germany, that this cannot be explained by the obvious differences between countries, also mentioned by Malmström. Is the lady from Berlin overestimating the amount, or is the lady from Brussels underestimating?

In any case both are estimating as the real money-value of corruption is unknown. All involved as briber or as recipient very cautiously remain silent about what they win and lose. Moreover, TI openly recognizes that what is registered are not more than ‘perceptions’. However, these are quoted as ‘facts’ by the media, governments and investors that apparently have an interest in doing so.

Secondly, the amounts as quoted by Labelle and Malmström differ quite a bit from the impression as given by the TI-index. In the CPI-2012 (as in all previous ones since 1995), the countries of Western and Northern Europe score quite high. They are portrayed as ‘clean’. It is the poor countries of the world that are portrayed as ‘corrupt’ by listing them in the bottom end of the ranking order.

The ‘new’ CPI – Corruption Perceptions Index 2012

9 December is the UN international anti-corruption day. A few days earlier, on 5 December 2012, the Transparency International (TI) Secretariat in Berlin launched the latest CPI, Corruption Perceptions Index 2012. (CPI-2012)

This ‘product’ of the global NGO that is leading in the fight against corruption played a useful role in 1995 when it was first launched as a wake-up call to the world that failed to see one of the major dangers to our society and economy.

The TI-website asks the following question and answers:

What does a number mean to you? Each year we score countries on how corrupt their public sectors are seen to be. Our Corruption Perceptions Index sends a powerful message and governments have been forced to take notice and act.

Behind these numbers is the daily reality for people living in these countries. The index cannot capture the individual frustration of this reality, but it does capture the informed views of analysts, businesspeople and experts in countries around the world [emphasis added by MvH].

It is good to see that TI itself already testifies that the ranking in the CPI is (1) not based on facts, but on ‘how corruption in the public sector is seen’. And also (2) disqualifies the representativeness of the views expressed in the ranking numbers of the CPI. These views come from ‘analysts, businesspeople and experts’, in other words not from ordinary people, neither from victims (both would be also non-representative samples!) Should the organization not be more careful in the use made of these rankings?

Over the years since the launch in 1995, criticism of the CPI-methodology and research techniques was growing and not answered by TI-Secretariat or the producer of the CPI.

Regretfully, the ‘TI-product’ and the way it was made could not stand scientific criticism, and the criticism that was published, among others by me, in serious contributions to the scientific debate were never answered by TI. [See discussion paper and footnotes at → Union Jack → Publications → Michel van Hulten →scroll down till (2007): Ten years of Corruption (Perceptions) Indices, Methods – Results – What next? An analysis, by Dr. Michel van Hulten, 2007, ISBN 978-90-811048-2-1].  

The main producer of the CPIs from 1995 till 2010, Professor Dr Johann Graf Lambsdorff of Passau University in Germany, withdrew his collaboration early in 2011. Since then, the TI-Secretariat is in charge. The message was widely spread by the TI-secretariat in Berlin that an overhaul of work on this ranking effort could be expected that would improve its quality and that realization would begin with the 2012-edition. The Press release of TI-Berlin of the 5th of December 2012 presented the new CPI-2012 under the heading BACKGROUND as:

This year Transparency International has updated the methodology for the Corruption Perceptions Index 2012. To reflect this the Corruption Perceptions Index is presented on a scale from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).

The purpose of this document is to look at the published results of this ‘updated’ approach and to answer the question whether the new methodology and techniques of research results in a better ranking of corruption-perceptions in the world.

Results in CPI-2012

As announced, the CPI-2012 was published on 5 December 2012. The complete ranking begins with Denmark as number 1 (the ‘D’ comes before the ‘F’ of Finland (2) and (N) of New Zealand (3), in alphabetical order as all three score the same 90 points on a scale of 100). The ranking ends with Somalia as number 176, the last one, also ranked in alphabetical order with the other two countries scoring 8 out of 100 points which gives Afghanistan (176) and North Korea (177) and made Somalia (178), all numbered (176) in the published list.

The Netherlands scored 8.9 (on a scale of 1 to 10) in 2011 and ranked nr. 7. This year, 2012, the Netherlands score 84/100 and rank nr. 10 (Canada scores also 84/100 but ranks as nr. 9 because the ‘C’ comes before the ‘N’).

The change from a decimal system with scores from 0.0 to 10.0 is replaced by scores from 1 to 100. Indeed a renewal, but not really big! The effort to make one scale in use for all results from all sources instead of qualifying per source the results on separate scales, is laudable.

These results come from judgments about reliability of sources and quality assessment of those that are responsible for the registration of perceptions of corruption in the 13 sources that are used.

Not much is said about the subject of research: corruption itself.

What is corruption?

The ‘Technical Methodology Note’ made available at the TI-website with regard to the CPI-2012 mentions as this subject under the ‘Selection of data sources’:

Data addresses corruption in the public sector:

The question or analysis should relate to a perception of the level of corruption explicitly in the public sector. The question can relate to a defined ‘type’ of corruption (e.g. specifically petty corruption), and where appropriate, the effectiveness of corruption prevention as this can be used as a proxy for the perceived level of corruption in the country.

This is very clear in the sense that so-called ‘private corruption’ is not included at all.

Some deplore this, I do not. Our public interests in our common affairs for everybody in our commonwealths of people are particularly vulnerable for misbehavior involving those that we chose (politicians) or nominate (in public service) to deal with our needs and common tasks: governance, judiciary, policy making and safety. The power we give to some among us, through election or nomination, should be used for the welfare and wellbeing of all, not for private profit. What people do individually among themselves -‘private corruption’ – is in the first place their own concern.

Although I think that everybody can be satisfied with this choice for ‘corruption in the public sector’, I think that nobody can be satisfied with the weakening of that choice to only ‘perceptions’, and still less to a proxy like ‘effectiveness of corruption prevention’. Why this proxy and not others? The choice not to define ‘corruption’ is a weak spot in the preparatory phase of the making of the CPI. Moreover, also other proxies, as in the supporting 13 reports which have been used to make the CPI-2012, have been accepted.

As examples to prove this statement I turn to data given in attachment 1 to this paper, I quote: 13 data sources were used to construct the Corruption Perceptions Index 2012 (also taken by me from the TI-website), in which are described the questions that are asked as reported by the sources.

Source number 1, African Development Bank Governance Ratings 2011, mentions that experts are asked to assess: Transparency, Accountability and Corruption in the Public Sector. And further details this criterion as

‘the extent to which the executive can be held accountable for its use of funds and the results of its actions by the electorate and by the legislature and judiciary, and the extent to which public employees within the executive are required to account for the use of resources, administrative decisions, and results obtained.


Each of three dimensions should be rated separately:

(a) the accountability of the executive to oversight institutions and of public employees for their performance;

(b) access of civil society to information on public affairs; and

(c) state capture by narrow vested interests.’

Source number 2, Bertelsmann Foundation Sustainable Governance Indicators 2011:

‘- Experts are asked to assess: “To what extent are public officeholders prevented from abusing their position for private interests?” This question addresses how the state and society prevent public servants and politicians from accepting bribes by applying mechanisms to guarantee the integrity of officeholders, through: auditing of state spending; regulation of party financing; citizen and media access to information; accountability of officeholders (asset declarations, conflict of interest rules, codes of conduct); transparent public procurement systems; and effective prosecution of corruption.’

This all looks as very interesting knowledge but is far from defining corruption. Look also at similar descriptions in the other eleven sources of the CPI-2012. Too many prove that corruption is not defined and that various proxies are in use.

I know that it is difficult to define corruption. But that no effort is made, this is not acceptable.

How does the EU try to define corruption?

It is interesting to see what try was given by a recently started EC-project that is still ongoing:

(The following quoted text is borrowed from an EC-initiative to fight corruption)


Corruption covers a broad variety of phenomena including in the first place what is commonly understood as ‘corruption’: ‘abuse of authority for private gains’. Most common people see this abuse predominantly as acquiring a privilege against a financial payment, the well-known ‘brown envelope with some rustling banknotes’ or some paper money in a passport. But corruption is also the negation of public integrity, diminishing or destroying the quality of acting in accordance with the moral values, norms and rules accepted by the body politic and the public in one’s own social-economic and political environment. These moral values are principles or standards of behavior that should have a certain weight in choice of action (what is good to do or bad to omit doing) for everybody in a given society. The norms and rules explicitly state what is considered to be morally correct behavior in a certain situation. Values, norms, rules guide the choice of action. They provide a moral basis for justifying or evaluating what we do.

Clearly, corruption is not only accepting money for doing someone a favor, it is also the exchange of powers to deviate from the rules: trading power and influence. The moral nature of these principles refers to what is judged as right, just, or good (conduct).

It is now generally accepted that several integrity violations or forms of public misconduct can be distinguished: corruption including bribing, nepotism, cronyism, patronage; fraud and theft; conflict of interest through assets, jobs, gifts; manipulation of information; discrimination and sexual harassment; improper methods for noble causes (using immoral means to achieve moral ends); the waste and abuse of resources; and private time misconduct.

Thus, corruption as ‘the abuse of public office for private gain’ is a specific type of violation against the moral norms and values for political and administrative behavior. This is then limited to a particular kind of illegal behavior.

Broader interpretations of ‘corruption’ conceive this social-economic, historical and modern phenomenon in all societies of the world as a synonym for all or almost all of the mentioned violations of the moral norms and values. And those depend on differences in relative weight of power and exertion of influence by actors in society.

Both conceptions of corruption are present in the international discussion.

End of quote

Recently, the European Commission (EC) set up a Network of Correspondents. Each one of them should aim to cover in their own country the whole field that is implied by the concepts of ‘integrity’, ‘ethics’ and ‘corruption’, all in the context of the European multifaceted culture. The EC explicitly mentioned: ‘Corruption is facts’. The task for network correspondents was defined as ‘to identify the facts and not to believe what “observers” have as perceptions of personal misbehavior which they declare to be “corruption”.

Compared with this European ‘facts’-oriented approach, the ‘Corruption Perceptions Index’ is a dangerous tool. It represents what some (and not at random selected!) people believe that they can and are willing to identify as corruption. Of course, I agree with those that consider corruption as mostly a hidden activity, and agree that it is difficult to find the facts, and rather easy to go with the crowd in ‘perceptions’ about corruption.

As the results prove, corruption is by TI mostly recognized as a characteristic of the poor and powerless. Is this real? Or is this the result of the chosen methodology to go for ‘perceptions’ instead of for ‘facts’?

Question to the TI-leadership

Why did TI continue efforts to improve the registration of perceptions of corruption and did not use the past two years of renewal also setting up a network of Correspondents in order to get reporting on facts? Could all the chapters of TI in the world not have served as such corresponding members providing the data needed in TI-headquarters?

The ’13 sources’ of the CPI-2012

The number of sources used for the ranking effort is diminished from 17 in 2011 to 13 in 2012. Indeed this is an improvement as three sources of the CPI-2011 are eliminated that doubled with earlier editions in the same series for successive years. And it is announced that the results as given in the CPI-2012 will now be the benchmark against which future results of the ranking exercises will be measured. Why the Asian Development Bank Assessment is omitted in the CPI-2012, although it had been used in the CPI-2011, is not clearly explained. As renewals with regard to finding relevant information, that is it.

I regret that this is all. Looking at the information sources for the CPI-2012, the only conclusion can be: there is no ‘new’ CPI! This is already an important support for my conclusion that most important criticisms from earlier years are not honored (see also later in this document). Those criticisms are not even referred as present reporting says ‘we want to look forward not into the past’.

For several of the statements I made already before, and of those that are following, I need to caution the reader of this document as I could not have free access to six of the thirteen sources as used by Transparency International. Go to the attachment of this document where all thirteen are listed and note with me that only the seven sources numbered 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, 11, and 13 are made ‘publicly available’. For the other six you have to be ‘subscriber’ (number 4), ‘customer’ (numbers 6, 7, 8, and 9), or worst: number 12 that states: ‘Some aggregated data is available in the appendix of the Global Competitiveness Report’. Not the original research figures.

Where is the ‘transparency’ of this CPI-2012 that is produced by the organization that calls itself ‘Transparency International’? Never heard of ‘open sources’?

Open sources are the basic requirement for any corruption research.

Strangely enough, it is not explained in the CPI-2012 report how it is possible that Germany scores in the CPI-2012 with 79 points (rank 13) among the top-cleanest countries, as only four weeks earlier the TI-president in her keynote address in the International Anti-Corruption Conference held in Brasilia, mentions that the German economy is plagued in 2012 by corruption-related losses of 250 billion (nine zero’s) euros. I asked the Berlin Secretariat an explanation, which could not be provided.

Obviously, the contradiction had not even been seen in Berlin, and after my questioning (11 November 2012, repeated several times addressing various staff-members), an answer to that question could not be provided (situation at 23 December 2012). Does this discrepancy have to do with the choice of the sources of information used in the CPI-2012?

The new CPI-methodology continues to use ‘perceptions’, also called ‘informed views of analysts, businesspeople and experts observers’. For me the concept ‘perceptions’ contains an emotional factor, while ‘informed views’ has a more rational connotation. Is this not so for the researchers of TI? Should ‘informed views’ conceal the lack of facts in the CPI-2012? Of course, those involved and used as informants or respondents know what is going on in the world. It is most likely that they are experts in corruption-affairs. Most of them probably live in the shit that corruption is. It is all around them, if they are not at the paying and giving end of a lot of the corruption.

Why does TI neglect the facts?

Every day, news about corruption among the high and mighty in the world reaches our media. Hundreds of researchers report their findings wherever they are asked to delve into corruption affairs. Numerous courts deal with corruption cases. Why then is TI continuing to use ‘perceptions’, ‘informed views’, (‘images’ if you wish), instead of facts to establish a ranking order of corruptness of countries (or – why not? – companies? Or persons, or groups?) The world now knows more than in 1995 and in the early years of the CPI (and of TI) thereafter. The organization should have matured as many of the researchers in this field are now uncovering more of the secrets of corruption than ever before. That TI continues to look for ‘perceptions’ is a bit outdated? That is all?

In my view, it is irresponsible of TI, to continue classifying countries as more or less corrupt using this outdated yardstick of perceptions.

Why not ‘facts’ and a ‘Corruption Scale’ as proposed by the consultants?

These objections against the continued use of ‘perceptions’ instead of ‘facts’, are the more so pertinent as the two TI-consultants Andrew Gelman and Piero Stanig wrote already in their report of 2010 (p.14/15 in Proposals to improve the index of corruption):

corruption vs. corruption perceptions

We understand the motivation behind calling the index “Corruption Perceptions Index”. Yet, we would like to suggest that, if the estimates of the index are based on the latent variable model we propose and implement, the index can be treated as an index of corruption, not only of corruption perceptions. Indeed, the individual sources do not set out to capture corruption perceptions, but corruption itself. Clearly, these are noisy measures, so in this sense they are just perceptions. Our method partitions the information in the sources between noise (the “perception” part) and the latent phenomenon (the “corruption” part). The main assumption on which the model allows this interpretation is that correlations in the values provided by various sources are rooted in the true extent of the phenomenon. Hence there is no good reason why an index based on the latent variable approach cannot be named, for instance, “Corruption Scale”.

The least we could expect from TI with the publication of the CPI-2012 is to answer the question why the advice of the independent consultants has not been followed but that the organization sticks with the ‘perceptions’ and does not move toward the registration, analysis and interpretation of ‘facts’?

Who are the respondents/informants?

Moreover, the perceptions that are used come from biased sources. Most informants and respondents are board room types, have a business background, are white, Anglophone, well-educated, well-earning, expatriates, and men. Among the informants and respondents are few, if at all the colored, blue collar workers, lower ranking staff in their companies or administrations, the poor, handicapped, sick, women. In short the ‘perceptions’ come from those in power, not from the powerless that might have totally different perceptions of the reality of the world around them.

I emphasize that the mistake should not be made that it is racism that is mentioned above. The dividing line between respondents and those that are not even asked to give their perception of corruption is power, class. The CPI-2012 is based on persons’ views that come (nearly) all from the same socio-economic background. Maybe there is a reason to work this way as it is more than likely that among those that were allowed to give their perceptions of corruption, perpetrators of corrupt behavior are numerous? If so why not mentioned? Do these perpetrators have the knowledge we need as corruption-fighters, but do they also have so much power and influence that they can prevent corruption fighting? They are better served if corruption remains unknown?

Just have a look at the reports and the research being used and mentioned as the sources of the CPI. It is inescapable that those delivering information are one-sidedly lined up with the powerful. And as we all know: power creates corruption.

In line with the foregoing line of thinking comes inevitably the question whether it is good for TI (the global player) to be co-financed for nearly one hundred percent by governments? The TI-budget in Berlin was co-financed by the Dutch government in 2010 for 750,000 euros and in 2011 for 1.2 million euros. Financing came also from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, UK, and USA. Their collective contribution of over 21 million euros is overwhelming the not even one million euros from foundations, companies and others (some private persons). Against all trends in national politics, the Dutch government pays now more to TI in Berlin than in earlier years and guaranteed already to continue to do so till 2014 (in four years 4.8 million euros). The TI-chapter in the Netherlands does not receive a penny from the Dutch government. Is strengthening of anti-corruption forces in the Netherlands too close for the Government? Another global player, Amnesty International, refuses to accept governmental money, it relies on members. Why is TI so close to governments? Does this closeness help the fight against corruption?

On the sideline I remark that Francophone, Spanish/Portuguese and Chinese studies have not been used. Why not?

I do not understand why the two scientists mentioned (from Columbia University and from LSE), that gave advice how to improve the CPI methodology, are ‘content with the sources’ as they have been used for this CPI-2012. I do not understand this as a year earlier they explicitly mentioned in their report with proposals that the CPI would win credibility and strength, if it also used the knowledge of reliable facts, at least added to the perceptions-approach, an advice that is not followed by TI.

Other possible sources?

I also wonder why TI does not report which other rankings in the world have been studied before choosing these 13 as the baseline studies to make the CPI?

I assume that TI-staff has scanned tens of options before deciding which ones to be used and which ones not to be used for the resulting composite index called the CPI-2012.

As users of the final result we could win more insight if we knew.


We would possibly know whether the Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance has been considered as a source ( and rejected. This site emphasizes that the annual Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance has been created in recognition of the need for a more objective and quantifiable method of measuring governance in all 48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa providing both a new definition of governance, as well as a comprehensive set of governance measures. Based on five categories of essential political goods (among these is ‘Rule of law, transparency and corruption’), each country is assessed annually against 58 individual measures, capturing clear, objective outcomes. The Ibrahim Index is a project of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation and has been developed under the direction of Robert I. Rotberg and Rachel Gisselquist of the Kennedy school of Government at Harvard University.


As was done in the CPI-2012 for Asia (Source nr. 8, see in the attachment: Political and Economic Risk Consultancy Asian Intelligence 2012) also for the Americas, a source of scores for corruption could have been used: the Vanderbilt University-study ‘The political culture of democracy in the Americas’, Nov. 2012, with a chapter on corruption and a ranking of all countries from the Americas.


Arab world

Several years ago, a well-received ranking of Arab countries was provided by the Arab Archives Institute (AAI) with the Jordanian Transparency Forum (JTF). They made a similar effort with their study ‘Against Corruption, the Role of Arab Civil Society in Fighting Corruption’, to rank 18 countries in the Arab world (partly overlapping the Mo Ibrahim study) according to the state of corruption and integrity. At the moment, this effort seems to be over and out.

The World

The CPI-2012 makes use of one World Bank source (see nr. 11 in the attachment, World Bank – Country Policy and Institutional Assessment 2011). TI did not publish why no use has been made of results coming from the World Bank Institute that has developed its own system of Governance Indicators with ‘many variables covering 215 economies over the period 1996-2011’. These indicators suffer from the same shortcoming as the work by TI/Lambsdorff for the CPI-2012: leaning too much towards perceptions, but this cannot be an excuse to be made by TI. The Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) research project, measures six dimensions of governance, among which is ‘control of corruption’. See: , in particular chapter on Control of Corruption.


It is more than likely that tens of other approximations of the ‘state of corruption’ in countries of the world exist. It is most likely that the TI-leadership had all of them surveyed (as was asked by the Annual Members Meeting in 2009) in order to win the capability to pick the best ones for the CPI-scoring and -ranking.

Why don’t we get to see that process?


To the surprise of many, the Berlin Secretariat of TI published in 1995 the first list of names of 41 countries lined up according to the descending score they earned with respect to the national prevalence of corruption. In subsequent years, this list grew quickly in numbers. In 2000 already roughly one hundred, now – in 2012 – they number 174. (See for all lists

The list in the first year came under the title ‘Corruption Index’. In particular lower ranking countries protested strongly using as their argument that the index represented not more than ‘impressions’: ‘images’ cherished by citizens/respondents. They did not have facts in hand! In 1996 the list was baptized ‘Corruption Perception Index’ (CPI). The plural of ‘perceptions’ came later. Re-baptizing was enough to continue what the organization wanted to do. Also the plural of ‘perceptions’ was important as between countries it appeared to be difficult and in fact impossible to define corruption. Local culture plays also a role.

The list was heralded as a wake-up call, and it functioned that way. Corruption became a subject worth attention in all media. The World Bank became a fighter against corruption in the mid-1990s, following the choice made already by UNDP some years earlier. The UN accepted the UN Convention against Corruption (2003). National governments adapted national laws to the new demands to fight corruption and to help sustain integrity. The Dutch government did so in 2002 and later years.

Nevertheless, governments, the media, and institutional investors understood the CPI as a list reflecting real life. The common interpretation of going up and down in the scores, is understood for a country as becoming less respectively more corrupt, while it could be also a change in attention paid to corruption, or much simpler: adding more and more countries to the list, automatically lowered the rank of some countries already listed, as newcomers were inserted at places higher up according to their perceptions-score.

From 2011 the CPI is made by and under the responsibility of the TI-Secretariat in Berlin. Geographically, the production of the CPI moved from Passau to Berlin. It was a wise decision to use this fact as the right moment to have a second look at the making of the CPI and to improve the product.

At the October 2009 Annual Members Meeting, the Transparency International movement decided that ‘the CPI, both its methodology and the choice of sources for inclusion, would be formally reviewed’. The CPI review process commenced in January 2010, where the scope of the exercise was defined and given the working title of the “CPI Enhancement Process” and an internal Transparency International CPI Working Group of 15, coming from all over the world, was established to be engaged for consultation throughout the process.

At the request of the Transparency International Board of Directors, the TI Secretariat began a review of the Corruption Perceptions Index in January 2010. This review encompassed both the examination of the CPI methodology and a consultation with the TI movement and other stakeholders about the index.

Transparency International’s Research Department has been working with a number of external academic and institutional experts over the years. All of them enjoy an excellent international reputation. These eleven experts have been formed into an Index Advisory Group (IAG), who was asked to provide input to the range of TI’s research tools and publications. The IAG were consulted throughout the review process.

Transparency International Index Advisory Group members:

Daniel Kaufmann – Revenue Watch Institute

 Francois Roubaud – Economist DIAL – Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement, France

 Jocelyn Kuper – Researcher / Research Media, Marketing and Socio-Political Analysis, South Africa

 Javier Herrera – Director of Research / DIAL – Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement, France

 Mireille Razafindrakoto – Economist / DIAL – Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement, France

 Richard Rose – Director, Centre for the Study of Public Policy, University of Aberdeen, UK

 Shang-Jin Wei – Columbia University, USA

 Steven Finkel – Professor / Department of Political Science University of Pittsburgh

 Susan Rose – Ackerman – Henry R. Luce Professor of Jurisprudence, Yale Law School and Department of Political Science, USA

 Christiane Arndt – Analyst, Regulatory Policy Division –Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development OECD

 Michael Klein – Currently Consultant/ Previously Vice-President World Bank

Independent consultants

Between April – August 2010, a comprehensive analysis of alternative approaches were proposed in a report carried out by two independent consultants.

 Prof. Andrew Gelman: Professor, Department of Statistics and Department of Political Science, Columbia University

 Dr Piero Stanig: Fellow, Methodology Institute, London School of Economics and Political Science

Their report ‘Proposals to improve the index of corruption’ (August 27, 2010) was circulated to the Working Group and the Index Advisory Group for comments. A full response to the comments was submitted in January 2011.

Last but not least, in November 2011, a version of the CPI 2011 was calculated under the updated methodology (this Index was not published). An expert statistical assessor in composite indicators:

Dr. Michaela Saisana – Senior Researcher, Joint Research Centre, European Commission in Ispra, Italy

provided an independent assessment of the CPI calculated under the new approach.

After all this highly qualified input still daring to reconsider the work done and trying to give an independent peer-review, seems to me is a hazardous effort. Nevertheless I will give it a try.

New Results

Does the new approach give new results? Do results differ from earlier results reached with the previous approach? What will we have to explain: change or similarity?

I had a look at the new CPI-2012, that qualifies 174 countries using the new approach and compared this one with the CPI-2011, as this was the last one made and published under the old regime, which qualified 182 countries. TI claims that it also did the work for the CPI-2011 again, using the new approach. Regretfully, the result of that effort has never been published. Why not?

I know that Professor Lambsdorff always warned against comparing the subsequent year-editions of the CPI. I have never understood why, so I will continue to do so.

The top-10 countries

If we take a look at who came on top in 2011 and in 2012, we see that the result in 2012 is a nearly perfect replica of the result in 2011 (between brackets): 2012

1. Denmark (2),

2. Finland (3),

3. New Zealand (1),

4. Sweden (4),

5. Singapore (5),

6. Switzerland (9),

7. Australia (8),

8. Norway (6),

9. Canada (10),

10. The Netherlands (7).

(This table is simplified by me as the reality is that e.g. Denmark and Finland both scored 9.4 in 2011, in the formal list they are both given the rank-order 2 (ex aequo), similarly Canada and the Netherlands score in 2012 both 84, rank 9 ex aequo, and also because of the alphabetical order Canada comes first and is nr. 9 and the Netherlands comes 10).


All countries that qualified in the top-10 in 2011 did the same in 2012,

– Some places within this group of ‘best ten’ changed,

– Scores were in 2012 between 84 for the Netherlands and 90 for Denmark and in 2011 between 8.7 for Canada (and 9.5 for New Zealand).

General conclusion: old or new approach? No change in results.

The top-25 countries

No change among the top-10 is unsatisfactory if someone wants to do something ‘new’, which happens to be the case. Therefore let us take a look at the top-25.

Regrettably, the same result: All 25 countries ranked among the top-25 in 2012 did so also in 2011. From the 2011 ‘top-25 countries’, it is only Qatar that drops out. It scored 7.2 and became nr 22 in 2011, and it scored 68 in 2012 and became nr. 27.

The bottom-10 countries

Let us have a look at the bottom end of the lists of 2011 and 2012.

The continuity and the similarity of the names of countries in the tail of the CPIs of 2011 and 2012 are also remarkable (2011 again in brackets).


167. Haïti (175)

168. Venezuela (174)

169. Iraq (176)

170. Turkmenistan (178)

171. Uzbekistan (179)

172. Myanmar (181)

173. Sudan (177)

174. Afghanistan (180)

175. Korea (North) (182)

176. Somalia (183)


All countries that qualified in the bottom-10 in 2011 did the same in 2012,

– Some places within this group of ‘bottom-10’ changed,

– Scores were in 2012 between 8 for Somalia and 19 for Haïti and Venezuela, and in 2011 between 1.0 for Somalia and 1.9 for Venezuela (and 1.8 for Haïti).

General conclusion: old or new approach? No change in results.

The bottom-25 countries

No change among the bottom-10 is unsatisfactory if someone wants to do something ‘new’! Therefore let us also here take a look at the bottom-25.

Regrettably, the same result: All 25 countries ranked among the bottom-25 in 2012 did so also in 2011 with one exception: Tajikistan, score 22, number 159, while it scored 2.3 in 2011, and ranked 152.

The world is not shocked by the new approach. Results in scores and ranks do not differ substantially from the previous year. The ‘new’ methodology is not ‘that’ new that it delivers unexpected shifts in scores and ranks.


It is remarkable that in the text accompanying the published figures for 2012, the reader is not specifically informed about this continuity between the results as established in 2011 and 2012.

Comparison with EC Corruption Barometer 2012

By sheer coincidence we can compare the results of the CPI-2012 with the results of another recent perceptions-research based on fieldwork in September 2011, published in February 2012 as Public Opinion Survey of the European Commission: ‘Corruption’, Special Eurobarometer 374,

As the CPI, this survey is based on ‘perceptions’, and not on ‘facts’. This is perfect for comparisons between the CPI-2012 and this survey. Timing in the same year is also fine.

The difference between the two studies is in the respondents. The CPI asks information from analysts, businesspeople, and experts observers. The European Commission had a representative sample drawn from the population of the Member-countries.

The Report begins (p.5) with the well-known text used by Ms Malmström, which says that ‘corruption costs Europe 120 billion per year’:

Corruption continues to be one of the biggest challenges facing Europe. Whilst the nature and scope of corruption varies from one EU State to another, it harms the EU as a whole in terms of reducing levels of investment, obstructing the fair operation of the Internal Market and having a negative impact on public finances. The economic costs incurred by corruption in the EU are estimated to amount to around EUR 120 billion per year. […

This survey was carried out by TNS Opinion & Social network with fieldwork conducted between 3rd and 18th September 2011. The methodology used is that of Eurobarometer surveys as carried out by the Directorate-General for Communication. A technical note on the manner in which interviews were conducted by the Institutes within the TNS Opinion & Social network is appended to this report. It indicates the interview methods and the confidence intervals. This survey covers the general population’s perceptions of:


Extent of corruption in EU Member States […, p. 8 [… The majority (74%) of Europeans believe that corruption is a major problem in their country.


Almost half of all Europeans (47%) think that the level of corruption in their country has increased over the past three years. 

[… Most Europeans think corruption exists within local (76%), regional (75%) and national (79%) institutions.


My objections against the CPI-2012

I had strong objections against the old approach, the methodology and techniques of research used in such a way that they inherently cause the final result: that it is the rich countries that get portrayed as ‘clean’, the poor countries as ‘corrupt’.

More and more I reached the conclusion that the data-input: perceptions instead of facts, offers a weak base for information about the extent and strength of corruption in our world. This weakness is not improved by sophisticated handling of the data and the workings of statistical methods. These latter two only construe a legitimization that does not reflect reality. In the Netherlands we know particularly well that ‘mud does not build a dyke’.

My conclusion is that

The results received this year under the title Corruption Perceptions Index – 2012 is no better than earlier editions of the CPI.

1. The scores and as a consequence the corruption rank-order of countries is again based on what observers think (perceptions), not on facts that have been registered, tabulated and analyzed.

The biggest problem is that it is not TI that presents these results as ‘facts’. Time and again it is clearly said by TI that the rank-order does not indicate how corrupt a country is as compared with other countries, but that the score and rank of a country is nothing more than an indication about the reputation a country enjoys with respect to corruption and integrity.

TI cannot be held responsible for the misinterpretations voiced by governments, the media and institutional investors. However, scientists should know better and not follow suit. TI should distance itself more strongly from the misuse of the CPIs.

2. The 13 sources being used in order to establish the scores and ranks as presented in the CPI-2012, collect mostly their information from respondents among whom men, in the age-group of 25-55 years, white collar-workers in private business, research, and national or international organizations, often expatriates, higher educated, well-paid, are overrepresented. Underrepresented are women, youth and the elderly, blue collar-workers, the poor, handicapped, sick, and in general the powerless, that suffer from corruption. Lacking are also investigative journalists and trade-unionists.

The thirteen (13) sources that have been used (see below attachment 1) were enough for the already cited scientists/authors Andrew Gelman en Piero Stanig to state at August 27th 2010 in the

‘Proposals to improve the index of corruption’: We do not see any problem with the sources currently included by TI in the estimation of the Corruption Perception Index. They all seem, at face value, plausible estimates of the underlying phenomenon under study. We recommend that, whenever possible, also information from surveys of the general public is included in the index. [… Moreover, the sources currently included in the CPI capture mainly the views of business actors and experts, both domestic and foreign. The information coming from surveys of the general public can usefully complement the information coming from the other two groups and increases the value, in terms of information, of the index itself.

[Note that the plural of ‘Perceptions’ above is missing, and that also these two consultants in cautious words oppose the rather biased choice of respondents].

I was surprised by this observation of these two consultants.

3. Corrupt behavior involves always two parties: the ones that pay, the others – receivers. Observers and researchers often emphasize the client/briber and the appointed public official. Omitted is often the chosen politician.

TI itself does not influence the way the source-studies have been developed. The most it can do is take that collection of data off the list of sources in use by TI.

4. More in general this is one of the handicaps TI has to overcome: it depends on the qualities of the supporting sources/documents and on the reliability of researchers that TI cannot command.

TI must have a great trust in what others do. Each successive year it is up to TI to decide to use again a source that was used the previous year. This includes also a duty to check the quality of researches done and maintain a source or disqualify its use.

5. From the reporting in the sources about questions relating to the concept ‘corruption’, it becomes clear that the concept ‘corruption’ knows widely divergent interpretations in the various sources.

As a result, the concept ‘corruption’ as used in the CPI-2012 is also in danger. Nevertheless, the impression is given that the sheer existence of the CPI-2012, is already a guarantee that it is possible to compare ‘apples, pears, and other fruits’, which is not the case. This makes also classification of all under one definition impossible. It is shown in attachment number 1 per supporting document what the researcher expects to find as answers to the questions posed. It is clear that in any case the questions are corruption-related. The only exception is source nr. 13, World Justice Project Rule of Law Index 2012/2013. This project-document does not even mention the words ‘corruption’ and ‘bribe’ in the research questions. (The report has a chapter on corruption).

Would it not have been better for TI to follow the example of Michael Johnston who concluded that it is impossible to catch all corruption in the world under one definition and denominator? Also he opposes the single list of the CPI.

As a consequence he devised what he called ‘corruption-syndromes’ and defined four of these as: ‘Influence Markets’, ‘Elite Cartels’, ‘Oligarchs and Clans’, and ‘Official Moguls’, see his Syndromes of Corruption: Wealth, Power, and Democracy, Cambridge University Press, 2005, ISBN 13 978-0-521-85334-7 hardback en ISBN 13 978-0-521-61859-5 paperback).

Using available statistical data he could classify some one hundred countries under these four headings. The Netherlands like the other northern European countries, the USA and Japan, he classified as ‘influence markets’ in which not bribery (‘the brown envelop with some money’) or ‘money under the table’, but ‘influence peddling’ and ‘patronage networks’ dominate.

The Elite Cartels (a.o. Belgium, Brazil, Greece, Italy), Oligarchs and Clans (a.o. Russia, Mexico, India), and Official Moguls (a.o. China, Indonesia, Nigeria) ‘enjoy’ other forms of corruption.

6. From earlier editions of the CPI, we know that there is no continuity in the use of all sources, also not in cases where new editions are available and could have been used.

Preference should be given to sources that annually are repeated. Some data (see below in the attachment: nr. 10 is triannial, and nrs 2 and 3 biannial) are only collected at intervals of two or three years. This diminishes their quality for use in an annual series like the CPI is. Then it is logical that the data to be used for the CPI-2012 should come from single sources established in more or less the same calendar-period. The two consultants also advised that the data-base should be limited to the year studied. But, even if this is the case as with the CPI-2012, as in past years, also the CPI-2012 uses data from four different consecutive years.

The oldest data for the CPI-2012 come from a report that begins on 1 May 2008 (and that ends on 30 April 2010). Youngest data for the CPI-2012 have become available in October 2012. The total covered period spans more than four years. It is an improvement that the same source but for different years is not used anymore simultaneously.

We see, if we compare the CPI-2011 and CPI-2012, that from some sources reports have been used, issued in more than one year. From the sources mentioned below under the numbers 7, 8, and 12, the CPI-2011 used the editions of 2010 and 2011. This double use has now ended. For the CPI-2012 it is only the editions for 2012 that have been used.

What should not happen is that not is explained in the text of the CPI-2012 why the Country Performance Assessment by the Asian Development Bank is not used in 2012.
The CPI-2011 used the 2010-edition. Now it should have been the 2011-edition.

7. TI does not inform us about the sources of data it has studied for inclusion of those data in the composite index which is the CPI. Which ones have been studied, which ones have not been accepted and for what reasons? What are the criteria to include a related study or not to include?

The CPI-2012 follows the usual pattern: this kind of information is not given.

Moreover, also in the CPI-2012 we do not find an answer to the question what sources have been studied by TI (and earlier by Lambsdorff) to find the thirteen that are finally used in making the CPI-2012. Which other studies had TI available but decided not to use, and for what reasons?

8. TI does not use sources of French, Spanish/Portuguese, and Chinese origin. It is unlikely that no French or Chinese, etcetera studies in this field exist

This does not mean that no opinions are collected about countries where French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, etcetera, are the dominant or administrative languages.

Per source, there are great differences between the number of countries being classified.

Lowest is nr. 5, Freedom House Nations in Transit 2012 listing 29 countries. Highest comes nr. 6, Global Insight Country Risk Ratings with 203 names of economic entities. (Per source in the attachment below is given the number of countries named in that study, also called territories or economies). Countries and people in all countries can be identified as in all international trade and multinational companies people learn about each other and learn perceptions. This gives them enough information which they can use to explain their own experiences and observations with regard to corruption.

The Anglophone dominance of the sources being used for the CPIs of the past years is extreme. As if in the French, Spanish/Portuguese, Chinese worlds no research like this one is done. In any case this absence means that the thinking of researchers in those parts of the world does not have any influence on the results.

9. What value do these sources represent?

TI identified 13 sources as good enough for the delivery of sufficient data to make it possible to score all entities involved (countries, territories, economies) and to rank them in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2012.

It could be useful to go over the contents of all these sources in order to establish whether they are indeed good enough for the purpose of identifying corruption and its weight in a particular society and making it possible to compare with corruption in other societies. Maybe I will do so at a later moment.

In the meantime it is good for all users of the CPI-2012 to be aware of the possibility (and the likelihood) that the sources are not good enough and that this adds up to the unreliability of the CPI-2012 scores and ranking.

It helps to understand what is at stake, if we look at e.g. the Global Insight Country Risk Ratings (Number 6 in the attachment with the sources listed). It helps to see the danger not to collect real data and real information, but constructed ones, products of the research modality chosen.

These ratings are advertised as

‘Country Risk Ratings

Features: Country risk ratings for over 200 countries

Comparison of business-focused risk between countries and over time

Six different weighted risk factors that mirror our country report categories:

Political (25%)

Economic (25%)

Legal (15%)

Tax (15%)

Operational (10%)

Security (10%) ‘

All work is based on estimations made by researchers/risk-specialists. Between brackets is given the relative weight between the factors as percentage value added to the common denominator that is constructed as risk estimate for a particular country.

The corruption risk is placed in the factor ‘operational risk’, ‘but also builds on the insight of the country experts in analysing the other areas of risk’.

The 10 percent weight-factor in the total of the country risk comes from five different sub-factors:


Attitude toward foreign investment

Infrastructural quality

Labor conditions

Bureaucracy and corruption

Travel advice

As we can see, ‘corruption’ is lumped together with ‘bureaucracy’ and subsequently with the other four factors into ‘operational risk’. What value does this have for the later use of these ‘Country Risk Ratings’ for the composite index which is the CPI-2012?

Moreover, these scores made by country-specialists are subsequently ‘reviewed and benchmarked’ by risk-specialists of this organization at regional and global level. More subjective is nearly impossible!

The continued description of the work methods in this organization reads as follows: ‘The ratings assess the broad range of corruption, from petty bribe-paying to higher-level political corruption and the scores assigned to each country are based on a qualitative assessment of corruption in each country/territory.’ Do these country-specialists dispose of quantitative data for their evaluations of ‘petty corruption’ and the ‘political corruption’? What about the ‘quality’ of corruption, what criteria have been used?

On top of all this: the CPI-2012 does not identify which figures in these country risk ratings have been used. The overall figures and ranking or only those given under the operational category?

Conclusion: it is the input that is mud

The CPI-2012 is full of questions. The research-methodology is doubtful. Questions about the methodology and the research-techniques being used remain so much unanswered by the makers of the CPI-2012, that only one serious advice can be given: don’t use these lists of ratings and ranking of nations. In any case, if you do anyhow, you should know that using the results is not supported by solid scientific evidence.

The use of the results for policy-making is not justifiable. In its appearance the CPI-2012 looks as serious work. The whole product is packed in an abundance of reports. Impressive statistical methods and calculations have been used. This all hides that it is not the way scientists calculate and describe that make this descriptive and analytical tool useful for the fight against corruption, but that it is the basic flaws in input of data, which make it useless to make use of the CPI-2012. And it is not only useless. It is also dangerous for the well-being of people and whole nations and for the economic health of countries, working people, and companies to consider this report as a solid base for the future fight against corruption and strengthening of integrity.

Mud never becomes concrete.


Attachment 1

Corruption Perceptions Index CPI-2012:

[the following information has been taken from the TI ‘Full Source Description’]

13 data sources were used to construct the Corruption Perceptions Index 2012:

1. African Development Bank Governance Ratings 2011

All African Countries (53) are covered with the exception of South Sudan (inclusion scheduled for 2013).

The data set has been published annually since 2005.

– Experts are asked to assess: Transparency, Accountability and Corruption in the Public Sector.

“This criterion assesses the extent to which the executive can be held accountable for its use of funds and the results of its actions by the electorate and by the legislature and judiciary, and the extent to which public employees within the executive are required to account for the use of resources, administrative decisions, and results obtained. Both levels of accountability are enhanced by transparency in decision making, public audit institutions, access to relevant and timely information, and public and media scrutiny. A high degree of accountability and transparency discourages corruption, or the abuse of public office for private gain. National and sub-national governments should be appropriately weighted.

Each of three dimensions should be rated separately:

(a) the accountability of the executive to oversight institutions and of public employees for their performance;

(b) access of civil society to information on public affairs; and

(c) state capture by narrow vested interests.” The 2011 Governance Ratings were compiled during 2011 and published in January 2012.

The data is publicly available online in the Bank’s web page,

It is also available through a dedicated data portal:

2. Bertelsmann Foundation Sustainable Governance Indicators 2011

31 OECD countries were scored.

First published in 2009, this is now a biennial publication.

– Experts are asked to assess: “To what extent are public officeholders prevented from abusing their position for private interests?” This question addresses how the state and society prevent public servants and politicians from accepting bribes by applying mechanisms to guarantee the integrity of officeholders, through: auditing of state spending; regulation of party financing; citizen and media access to information; accountability of officeholders (asset declarations, conflict of interest rules, codes of conduct); transparent public procurement systems; and effective prosecution of corruption.

– The Sustainable Governance Indicators 2011 were published in 2010 and assess a two-year period from 1 May 2008 to 30 April 2010. Data is publicly available online.

3. Bertelsmann Foundation Transformation Index 2012 128 countries and territories are scored.

First published in 2003, and has been published every two years since then.

– Experts are asked to assess:

“To what extent are public officeholders who abuse their positions prosecuted or penalized?”

“To what extent does the government successfully contain corruption?” – The data is taken from the BTI 2012 report, published in 2011 and assesses a two-year period from 1 February 2009 to 31 January 2011. The data is publicly available online

4. Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Ratings 144 countries/territories were scored in 2012 Since the early 1980s. Updated summaries are provided monthly for 100 countries and quarterly for the rest. The CPI draws on the most recent data provided, October 2012 for 144 countries/territories. – Specific guiding questions include:

 Are there clear procedures and accountability governing the allocation and use of public funds?

 Are public funds misappropriated by ministers/public officials for private or party political purposes?

 Are there special funds for which there is no accountability?

 Are there general abuses of public resources?

 Is there a professional civil service or are large numbers of officials directly appointed by the government?

 Is there an independent body auditing the management of public finances?

 Is there an independent judiciary with the power to try ministers/public officials for abuses?

Is there a tradition of a payment of bribes to secure contracts and gain favours?

– Country risk assessments have been produced by the EIU according to the standardised guidelines for the corruption question provided to each analyst.

Data is available to subscribers of EIU Country Risk Service.

5. Freedom House Nations in Transit 2012 29 countries/territories were ranked in 2012. The Nations in Transit (NIT) reports measure democratisation in 29 nations and administrative areas throughout Central Europe and the Newly Independent States (NIS). The report has been published annually since 2003. Experts score on questions including – Has the government implemented effective anti-corruption initiatives? – Is the government free from excessive bureaucratic regulations, registration requirements, and other controls that increase opportunities for corruption? – Are there adequate laws requiring financial disclosure and disallowing conflict of interest? – Does the government advertise jobs and contracts? – Does the state enforce an effective legislative or administrative process—particularly one that is free of prejudice against one’s political opponents—to prevent, investigate, and prosecute the corruption of government officials and civil servants? – Do whistleblowers, anti-corruption activists, investigators, and journalists enjoy legal protections that make them feel secure about reporting cases of bribery and corruption? – The 2012 Nations in Transit data coverage is from 1 January through 31 December 2011. The data is publicly available online.

6. Global Insight Country Risk Ratings 203 countries/territories worldwide are scored.

In operation since 1999 and is continuously maintained.

– Experts are asked to assess: Corruption, particularly as it affects operational activities for businesses. There is analytical emphasis on the economic and political drivers of the problem. From a business perspective, corruption is a particular concern in relation to obtaining business permits and favorable policy and planning decisions. Analysts will closely assess businesses’ experience of these processes. The data for the CPI 2012 was received in October 2012.

Data is available to customers of IHS’ Country Intelligence

7. IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2012 59 countries/territories around the world were scored in 2012.

The IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook has been published annually since 1989.

– Survey respondents were asked: “Bribing and corruption: Exist or do not exist”.

The 2012 data was gathered between January and April 2012, and published in May 2012.

Data is available to customers of IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook, package or online services.

8. Political and Economic Risk Consultancy Asian Intelligence 2012 15 Asian countries/territories plus the Unites States were surveyed in 2012. The ‘new’ CPI-2012 by TI, scientifically not defendable © Dr. Michel van Hulten 24

The survey dates back 20 years and is conducted annually. – Survey respondents were asked: “To what extent do you perceive corruption to be a problem in the following positions?”

 National-level political leaders

 City and other local-level political leaders

 Civil servants at the national level

 Civil servants at the city level

“To what extent do you perceive corruption to be a problem affecting the following institutions?”

 The police department

 The court system

 Customs

 The taxation bureau

 Government licensing bodies

 Inspection bodies

 The military

– The data used for the CPI 2012 was gathered in a survey carried out between December 2010 and February 2011 and published in March 2012. The data is available to subscribers.

9. Political Risk Services International Country Risk Guide

This Guide gives ratings for 140 countries on a monthly basis.

On a monthly basis since 1980 – This is an assessment of corruption within the political system. The most common form of corruption met directly by businesses is financial corruption in the form of demands for special payments and bribes connected with import and export licenses, exchange controls, tax assessments, police protection, or loans. The measure is most concerned with actual or potential corruption in the form of excessive patronage, nepotism, job reservations, exchange of favors, secret party funding, and suspiciously close ties between politics and business.

The ICRG model was created in 1980 and the data is made available on a monthly basis.

The CPI data is an aggregate of quarterly assessments covering the period of September 2011 to September 2012.

Data is available to customers of the PRS International Country Risk Guide.

10.Transparency International Bribe Payers Survey 2011 30 countries were surveyed in 2011.

First conducted in 1999. It is expected that the survey will be repeated triennially.

– Survey Respondents were asked: “In your opinion, how common is it for public officials to demand or accept bribes in this country?” “In your opinion, how common is the misuse of public funds for private gain in this country?” – The 2011 survey was conducted between April and June 2011. Data is publically available online.

11. World Bank – Country Policy and Institutional Assessment 2011 78 countries were scored in the CPIA 2011. First released in 2005 in its current form, the CPIA is now an annual exercise.

– Experts are asked to assess: Transparency, Accountability and Corruption in the Public Sector. “This criterion assesses the extent to which the executive can be held accountable for its use of funds and the results of its actions by the electorate and by the legislature and judiciary, and the extent to which public employees within the executive are required to account for the use of resources, administrative decisions, and results obtained. Both levels of accountability are enhanced by transparency in decision making, public audit institutions, access to relevant and timely information, and public and media scrutiny. A high degree of accountability and transparency discourages corruption, or the abuse of public office for private gain. National and sub-national governments should be appropriately weighted. Each of three dimensions should be rated separately: (a) accountability of the executive to oversight institutions and of public employees for their performance; (b) access of civil society to information on public affairs; and (c) state capture by narrow vested interests.” – The ratings process typically starts in the fall and is concluded in the spring of the following year.

The scores disclosed in June 2012 (the 2011 CPIA exercise) cover 2011 country performance. The data is publicly available online.

12. World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey (EOS) 2012 In 2012 the survey captured the views of business executives in 140 economies.

The World Economic Forum has conducted its annual survey for more than 30 years.

– Survey respondents were asked: “In your country, how common is it for firms to make undocumented extra payments or bribes connected with the following”: a) Imports and exports; b) Public Utilities; c) Annual Tax Payments; d) Awarding of public contracts and licensing; e) Obtaining favorable judicial decisions. “In your country, how common is diversion of public funds to companies, individuals or groups due to corruption?”

-The data was gathered in a survey conducted between January and June 2012.

Some aggregated data is available in the appendix of the Global Competitiveness Report.

13. World Justice Project Rule of Law Index 2012 97 countries were scored in the 2012/2013 Rule of Law index. Third edition, annually.

The first edition was published in 2010, with slight variation in methodology and country coverage.

– A total of 68 questions are asked of experts and respondents from the general population (53 and 15 targeted to each group respectively) on the extent to which government officials use public office for private gain. These questions touch on a variety of sectors within government including the public health system, regulatory agencies, the police, and the courts. Individual questions are aggregated into four sub-indices:

 Government officials in the executive branch do not use public office for private gain

 Government officials in the judicial branch do not use public office for private gain

 Government officials in the police and the military do not use public office for private gain

 Government officials in the legislature do not use public office for private gain

Data will be publicly available online for the 2012 report. The 2012 report is based on data collected and analyzed during the second quarter of 2012.


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