Perhaps unsurprisingly, folks in the anticorruption community have started to generate a fair amount of commentary on the links between the coronavirus pandemic and corruption/anticorruption; these pieces approach the connection from various angles, including how corruption might have contributed to the outbreak and deficiencies in the response, the importance of ensuring adequate anticorruption safeguards in the various emergency measures being implemented to address both the public health crisis and the associated economic crisis, and concerns about the longer term impact on institutional integrity and checks and balances. Last week I posted links to four such commentaries. Since then, we’ve had two commentaries on the corruption-coronavirus relationship here on GAB (yesterday’s post from Sarah Steingrüber, and last week’s post from Shruti Shah and Alex Amico). Since then, I’ve come across some more, and I thought it would be useful to provide those additional links, and perhaps to try to start collecting in one place a list of commentaries on corruption and coronavirus. The new sources I’ve come across are as follows:
- Sarah Steingrüber, Monica Kirya, David Jackson, and Saul Mullard have a U4 Anticorruption Resource Centre publication, “Corruption in the Time of Covid-19: A Double-Threat for Low Income Countries,” which emphasizes the ways in which the disease outbreak may be causing an associated corruption outbreak, and suggests ways that donors and other development actors can try to minimize the threat that corruption poses to an effective response to the crisis.
- Roy Poses has a piece on the Health Care Renewal blog entitled “The Ultimate Conflict of Interest: Trump Organization Revenue vs Lives Lost to Coronavirus,” which (as the title implies) argues that President Trump’s financial interests may have distorted his response to the coronavirus in ways that undermined the effectiveness of that response.
- Finally, I came across one more commentary that was a bit ahead of the curve on this topic–back on March 4, Rebecca Rohr wrote a blog post on the Corporate Counsel blog on “Addressing Anti-Corruption Risks from the Coronavirus.” This post is directed more towards private sector firms (especially their legal and compliance departments) rather than government policymakers, and focuses on how to managed the heightened bribery risks associated with the pandemic and the economic disruption it will cause.
In case it’s helpful to readers, I may start to compile and regularly update a list of corruption-coronavirus resources. The ones I’ve got so far (including those noted above):
- Gretta Fenner & Monica Guy, “Did Corruption Cause the Deadly Coronavirus Outbreak?” (FCPA Blog post, January 30, 2020)
- Rebecca Rohr, “Addressing Anti-Corruption Risks from the Coronavirus” (Corporate Counsel blog post, March 4, 2020)
- Natalie Rhodes, “Coronavirus: The Perfect Incubator for Corruption in Our Health Systems? 7 Key COVID-19 Points To Consider” (Transparency International article, March 13, 2020).
- Natalie Rhodes, “Corruption and the Coronavirus: How To Prevent the Abuse of Power During a Global Health Pandemic” (Transparency International article, March 18, 2020) (expanded version of Ms. Rhodes’ March 13 piece, listed above)
- Abigail Bellows, “Coronavirus Meets Corruption: Recommendations for U.S. Leadership” (Carnegie Endowment post, March 20, 2020)
- Jodi Vittori, “Corruption Vulnerabilities in the U.S. Response to Coronavirus” (Carnegie Endowment post, March 20, 2020)
- Shruti Shah & Alex Amico, “Ensuring Adequate Accountability, Transparency, and Anticorruption Measures During the Pandemic” (Global Anticorruption Blog post, March 24, 2020)
- Roy Poses, “The Ultimate Conflict of Interest: Trump Organization Revenue vs Lives Lost to Coronavirus,” (Health Care Renewal blog post, March 24, 2020)
- Sarah Steingrüber, Monica Kirya, David Jackson & Saul Mullard, “Corruption in the Time of Covid-19: A Double-Threat for Low Income Countries” (U4 Basic Guide, March 27, 2020)
- Sarah Steingrüber, “Coronavirus and the Corruption Outbreak” (Global Anticorruption Blog post, March 30, 2020)
I’m sure there are more useful commentaries, and many more to come over the coming weeks. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to keep a comprehensive list, but I’ll do my best to provide links to the resources I’m aware of, so if you know of useful pieces on the corruption-coronavirus link, please send me a note.
Thanks everyone, and stay safe.