Key takeaways

  1. Companies can be linked to types of corruption: bribery, money laundering, illegal transactions, etc.

  2. You have to ensure that your analysis is not an ethical or moral assessment. Be objective, what is the impact of the company's corruption case(s)?

  3. To publish an analysis about corruption, you must identify the specific kind of corruption that took place, along with the depth, breadth and persistence of impact.

What is it?

Corruption is the dishonest and often illegal behaviour by those in positions of power. Corruption can include giving or accepting bribes or inappropriate gifts, double-dealing, under-the-table transactions, manipulating elections, diverting funds, laundering money, or defrauding investors.


SDG choice

(other SDGs may apply depending on the impact of the corruption)

Impact assessment

In your analysis about a type of corruption, consider the following analysis flow that is in alignment with the IMP framework:

1. Start by explaining why good corporate governance is crucial, particularly for banks and multinationals that can play a systemic role in the broader economy. A general value of good governance would apply here.

2. Explain how governance failure has led to concrete issues such as bribery, money laundering, etc.

3. Quantify the negative impact. For money laundering, the negative impact is related to the fact that it helps criminal activities to thrive. Bribery could lead to lowering social security standards for employees, circumventing an environmental regulation, depriving local communities of exploiting their natural resources, putting on the market unsafe products, etc.

  • An analysis that reports on a corruption case is only acceptable if details are provided about the impact of that type of corruption. You can link studies which have quantified this type of corruption and reported its impact on society or the environment.

  • Make sure in your analysis that you do not make an ethical assessment of the company, but rather an impact assessment. Read our article “Golden Rule #3: Differentiate ethics from impact” if you are unsure about the difference between the two.

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