SPEAK UP, South Africa: the impact of the Nkandla ruling

In March this year South Africa’s highest court upheld a landmark investigation by the courageous Public Protector Thuli Madonsela that showed how taxpayers’ money had been used to upgrade President Jacob Zuma’s personal residence. This underscored the importance of the role of the Public Protector in holding those in power to account. It is the […]

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Yes, there are legitimate uses of shell companies They still shouldn’t be secret

Thanks to an anonymous provider of data and the incredible work done by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), over the last days the world has gained an unprecedented peek into the global system of secret shell companies. The Panama Papers revelations have forced governments to respond, one national leader to step down, and […]

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THE PANAMA PAPERS AND TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL

  Communicators are strong swimmers. We don’t always sprint, but we can handle long distances and the hard swim upstream. The Panama Papers have exposed a global web of secrecy and corruption that hurts all of us. It has also exposed the Chair of our chapter in Chile and that deeply troubled us. He of […]

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Public pressure forces Iceland’s prime minister to step down over Panama Papers

Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson resigned on Tuesday just one day after thousands of people marched in the streets protesting his use of secret bank accounts facilitated by Mossack Fonseca, a Panamanian law firm which had as clients Gunnlaugsson and his wife. Iceland was the only country that jailed top financial executives behind bars in […]

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Secret company ownership: a global solution for a global challenge

The way the rich and powerful hide their ill-gotten gains is headline news around the world today. The Panama Papers show everyone how easy it is to set up secret companies that let people avoid taxes and launder money. Kings do it, business tycoons do it, footballers do it, presidents and prime ministers do it.  […]

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Giving people a voice: lessons from measuring corruption

As the world embarks on the ambitious global development agenda known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it is important to have accurate measures of progress, or even lack of progress. Otherwise the goals themselves are at risk of becoming illegitimate. To track the goals, we need to have meaningful indicators that reflect what is […]

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Why open data can stop corruption

There has been a big push in recent years to make government data open so citizens know where their tax money is spent– from snow collection in Chicago and broken street lights in Tbilisi, to what public officials declare about their assets in Mexico and their lobbying meetings with companies in the EU. While data […]

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A new win for Ukraine in fighting corruption

On 15 March 2016, 278 Ukrainian MPs voted to approve a new e-declarations law called No.3755. The law will oblige public servants, politicians, managers of state and communal enterprises, and other employees who are paid from state budget such as doctors and teachers, to declare their full income and assets. It also requires them to […]

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Maldives: islands lost in corruption

The Maldives is an archipelago made up of more than 1000 islands, with a population of about 351,000 people. Most of the islands are uninhabited; 187 are home to people and 106 are designed as beach resorts for the well-heeled traveller. Grand corruption emerged as the biggest problem in the country when a massive scandal […]

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When sex is the currency: corruption in the Arab World

“For every button you open on your blouse, you will get an extra grade in the course,” a professor told a female student when she visited his office at a private university in Jordan. He demanded a sexual favour in return for a passing grade. She failed. She is not alone. Many women in the […]

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