In December, MCC’s Board of Directors will meet to determine which countries will be eligible for FY2015 funding. While the agency’s annual country scorecards won’t be ready for a few months, updated corruption and democracy data are available now.
One of the biggest hopes people expressed about Jim Kim’s nomination to become president of the World Bank was that he would bring a fresh perspective, focused on achieving results, rather than reinforce the institution’s bureaucratic machinery. Unfortunately, President Kim’s recent remarks at the Center for Foreign Relations suggest that bureaucratic inertia is winning.
When opportunities for corrupt earnings rise, is there more corruption? This fundamental question is the subject of new, frontier-pushing research by two young stars of development economics: CGD alumnus Sandip Sukhtankar and his co-author Paul Niehaus.
CGD's Casey Dunning, Charles Kenny, and Jonathan Karver recently wrote an analysis with the provocative title "Hating on the Hurdle," that offered constructive criticism of the Millennium Challenge Corporation's (MCC) approach to penalizing corruption using a “hard hurdle.”
Last week, CGD hosted a discussion with Alicia Phillips Mandaville and Andria Hayes-Birchler of the Millennium Challenge Corporation about the MCC’s ‘corruption hard hurdle’ –the Corporation’s use of a corruption indicator as a key pass/fail component of selecting which countries are eligible for MCC support.
In preparation for a CGD working group on government contract publication, we’ve been looking at how much information governments already put online about the contracts that they award. Australia — current president of the G-20 — is an interesting case.
Our new analysis Hating on the Hurdle explores the MCC’s use of a hard hurdle for its control of corruption indicator and finds that this strict interpretation – a country must be above the median on the corruption indicator to be considered for eligibility – is doing a disservice to the MCC and its partner countries.
Politicians and agency officials are always morally indignant when it comes to corruption in foreign aid, pointing to elaborate procedures and investigative offices to prove that they are “tough” and calling for zero tolerance (most recently here and here). However, for most governments and agencies, corruption is only a problem when it is discovered. That is when it becomes an obstacle to disbursing funds and keeping business moving.
Are pay-for-performance aid programs such as Cash on Delivery Aid more vulnerable to corruption than traditional input-focused programs? My guests this week, senior fellows William Savedoff and Charles Kenny, argue in a new new working paper and brief that the opposite is true.