People have always looked for a way to gain an advantage, take a short route, or get around the system in order to gain power and influence. This phenomenon has existed since antiquity, from ancient Mesopotamia to our current high-level ethical quagmire. Robert Rotberg, a renowned expert on governance and international relations, provides a comprehensive overview of corruption and anticorruption in this book from the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series. He charts the development of corruption and makes suggestions on how to lessen its influence and spread. He contends that the most crucial element of anticorruption initiatives is leadership that is dedicated to altering predominate political cultures.
According to Rotberg, corruption is transforming a public good into personal gain, either through the payment of influence for money or through giving special privileges even in the absence of payment. He explores the responsibilities of legal systems, investigative journalism, multinational firms, and technological advancements while describing effective anticorruption initiatives in nations ranging from Denmark and Sweden to Canada and Costa Rica. He examines recent events in the US with Canada and demonstrates how the US has become much more corrupt than it was previously.
Lack of political resolve to end corruption results in its persistence. Rotberg lays forward thirteen doable actions for combating corruption, such as the removal of corrupt holdover officials and the public disclosure of financial assets by elected officials and appointees.