Corruption by Design: Building Clean Government in Mainland by Melanie Manion

By Melanie Manion

This booklet contrasts stories of mainland China and Hong Kong to discover the urgent query of ways governments can rework a tradition of common corruption to at least one of unpolluted executive. Melanie Manion examines Hong Kong because the most sensible instance of the opportunity of reform. inside many years it completed a spectacularly winning conversion to scrub executive. Mainland China illustrates the trouble of reform. regardless of greater than twenty years of anticorruption reform, corruption in China keeps to unfold primarily unabated. The booklet argues that the place corruption is already typical, the context within which officers and usual electorate make offerings to transact corruptly (or now not) is crucially various from that during which corrupt practices are unusual. A primary characteristic of this distinction is the position of ideals concerning the occurrence of corruption and the reliability of presidency as an enforcer of ideas ostensibly constraining legit venality. Anticorruption reform in a surroundings of frequent corruption is an issue not just of lowering corrupt payoffs, but in addition of fixing commonly shared expectancies of venality. The publication explores variations in institutional layout offerings approximately anticorruption enterprises, acceptable incentive constructions, and underlying constitutional designs that give a contribution to the disparate results in Hong Kong and mainland China.

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Students launched a protest campaign and petitioned the British prime minister to return Godber to face trial. An editorial in the Hong Kong Law Journal summarized public reaction: “The ordinary man in the Hong Kong street quite fairly thinks it monstrous that a senior British official should be able to commit a serious criminal offence in the Colony and then be permitted to enjoy his ill-gotten wealth in Britain, safe under the protection of British law” (“Godber” 1973: 249). To be sure, street protests against the government in 1973 were nothing comparable to the antigovernment riots of 1966 or 1967—this owed much to the governor’s swift response.

21 At the end of 1975, with more than 400 officers, many of them with significant investigative experience, the Operations Department was able to take the initiative. Cater committed the department “to break the back of organized syndicated corruption within the next year or two” (ICAC 1976: 1). Syndicated corruption was an obvious target because of public outrage about corrupt police syndicates, and also because it is less difficult to investigate than some other forms of corruption. Corruption of the “satisfied customer” form, for example, usually involves only two parties, neither with any incentive to report to authorities.

Other legal changes reduced corrupt payoffs through institutional design, effectively changing the structure of incentives for electoral corruption. The 1872 Ballot Act introduced the secret ballot, which created uncertainty about the return on particular payments for votes. It also made it difficult to judge the closeness of an election until the end and, therefore, difficult to judge whether bribery was a worthwhile investment. While scholars generally agree that the Ballot Act contributed to the decline of electoral corruption, they view it as only one of a number of structural influences.

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