Working Group

Anti-Corruption

  • About

About

Background

Despite the centrality of fighting corruption to the OGP’s mission – it features as one of the four core areas of commitment in the Open Government Declaration – this area has received much less explicit attention in country commitments and peer exchange opportunities than one would expect.  The anti-corruption working group (ACWG) is a critical opportunity to encourage more focus, exchange of ideas and, most importantly, action, on anti-corruption reform in OGP countries, drawing on the enormous experience of government and civil society actors within the partnership.  A greater internal emphasis on anti-corruption is also in keeping with OGP’s commitment to integrating implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals into its work.1

Goals

The goal of the working group is to identify and share good practice and diverse country experiences that can feed into the development and implementation of anti-corruption commitments on an ongoing basis.  As a forum for peer learning and support, the working group is intended to stimulate a greater number of ambitious commitments around anti-corruption within OGP countries, to identify cross-cutting areas where collective commitments could be more beneficial than individual country efforts (for example, on anti-money laundering cooperation), to provide technical resources to shape the elaboration of commitments and to facilitate more effective implementation of commitments.

Many existing OGP commitments play a crucial role in fighting corruption: procurement transparency, freedom of information laws, asset disclosure and open data for example are all central to helping to prevent corruption from taking place. However, there has been much less focus within OGP on the detection and enforcement components of the anti-corruption system. This means having the appropriate rules, institutions, capacities and incentives in place to investigate corrupt networks, identify corrupt actors, pursue legal remedy and secure convictions to deny these actors impunity – in other words, to hold corrupt actors accountable.

Areas of potential country commitments within this domain include but are not limited to: (1) institutional reforms such as increasing the independence, mandate, and budget of anti-corruption authorities; (2) whistleblower protection; (3) stolen asset recovery measures; (4) anti-bribery laws; (5) the creation and use of beneficial ownership registries and other datasets that are crucial in identifying corrupt actors; (6) anti-money laundering reforms; (7) judicial reforms; and (8) strengthening political finance regulation.  In sum, the ACWG will promote robust anti-corruption commitments across the spectrum of prevention, detection, investigation, prosecution and sanction.2

For more information about the ACWG, contact Robin Hodess or José María Marín

 1. Goal 16 of the UN SDGs, among other goals, includes several targets related to anti-corruption, including: 16.5: Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms; 16.6: Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels; and 16.3: Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all.

2. For illustrative examples of ambitious OGP anti-corruption commitments, see Transparency International’s “Anti-Corruption Commitments in the Open Government Partnership”