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Tackling Corruption for Human Development in the Asia-Pacific

Posted by iaccforum on October 31, 2008

An expert panel debate, ‘Tackling Corruption for Human Development in the Asia-Pacific’, at the 13th IACC in Athens, Greece, on 2 November 2008 focuses on tackling corruption to improve human lives – to promote human development – rather than as an end in itself. It draws from the Asia-Pacific Human Development Report Tackling Corruption, Transforming Lives, coordinated by the Human Development Report Unit at the UNDP Regional Centre in Colombo.

The debate is about the Asia Pacific – a region that is rapidly growing, yet attempting the twin tasks of development and democratic consolidation at the same time. Four eminent expert panelists are to participate: Dr. Kiran Bedi (India), Mr. Kunda Dixit (Nepal), H.E. Dr.M. Osman Farruk (Bangladesh), and Honourable Justice Nazhat Shameem (Fiji). Their knowledge and experience in combating corruption is well known. BBC’s Nisha Pillai, who hosts ‘Asia Today’ and will be the expert moderator.

What’s different about this debate?

  • It focuses on pervasive ‘petty’ corruption, especially because of its impact on daily lives, on the poor and its emergence in situations of shortages where people may have little choice for survival. It compromises basic human rights. Petty corruption is actually a misnomer, underplaying its wide spread and persistence. The dollar amounts may be small, but number of transactions are numerous, and impacts corrosive. A better term is ‘retail’ corruption.         
  • It also addresses corruption that may be technically legal – when private interests undermine laws through state capture. This restricts people’s opportunities, undermining human rights.
  • Going beyond how corruption affects human development, the debate will also address human development itself, through people’s rights, voice and choice – can be part of the solution. What has worked well? Good practice and not so-good practices will be discussed.

For more on the debate please visit: http://www2.undprcc.lk/Publications/IACC1.pdf, for more on Tackling Corruption Transforming Lives, please visit: http://www.undprcc.lk/ext/crhdr/home.asp

UNDP

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