Brazilian Anticorruption and the World Cup

The FIFA World Cup is more than “a mere sporting event. It’s a tool to promote social transformation.”  So said Ricardo Teixeira, the President of the Brazilian Football Confederation, after Brazil won the bid to host the 2014 games. Despite initial optimism, however, the buildup to the Cup in Brazil has been marred by widespread protests and accusations of corruption. If there is a basis to these accusations, the World Cup provides an early — and high-profile — opportunity to test Brazil’s new anticorruption law. Maryum’s post earlier this week might be right that the national government has a political incentive to prove that it’s serious about anticorruption, but the World Cup contradicts that narrative. The Cup’s high profile might skew the national government’s incentives: identifying corruption in Brazil’s World Cup could be a national embarrassment.  If the federal government’s incentives are misaligned, the decentralized enforcement powers in the CCA – which Maryum’s post criticizes – offer hope that corruption will be punished. Continue reading