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This research, which often stems from or is inspired by anthropological methods, has contributed with ‘thick descriptions’ of, for instance, how societies are prismatic (Riggs, 1964), how the public-private dimension does not make sense in all societies (Gupta, 1995), how the evil of corruption is problematized (Ledeneva, 1998), and how the anti-corruption industry is becoming an autopoietic system (Sampson, 2010).We want to explore the possibility for moving such corruption critique forward by focusing explicitly on the role of theory.Admittedly, the central theme of this special issue – ‘a turn to theory’ – might seem naïve: What is critique, or research for that matter, without theory? First, corruption is an emotionally and ideologically vested concept, and corruption research is often characterized and/or motivated by normative descriptions and analyses of corruption.
a gradual institutionalization of misbehaviour which contributes to legitimizing behaviour and socializing others into it in such a way that it gradually becomes normalized, what may be called a ‘culture of corruption’ (Ashforth and Anand, 2003).
Such a process perspective has been invoked to explain why persons not considered to be corrupt or criminal might decide to engage in corrupt activities or networks (Fleming and Zyglidopolous, 2009; Martin et al., 2009) and to understand the kinds of ethical reflections (or lack of these) that lie behind corrupt activities (Trevino et al., 2006).
This logic is rooted in a belief that critique should engage in dialogue and debate with the dominant theories of corruption, creating alternatives to them, rather than simply dismissing them out of hand.
This, we hope, will lead to more multifaceted and nuanced discussions and understandings – both for research and practice.
Historically, corruption has been seen as an issue in the public sector, defined as the ‘the misuse of public office for private gain’ (The World Bank Group, 2012).
Role Of Media Against Corruption Essay
The scope has since been broadened to include other sectors, as illustrated in the widely used, post-Enron definition by Transparency International: ‘the abuse of power for private gain’ (Transparency International, 2009, italics added).By theory-based critique, we mean efforts to go beyond particular normative standpoints regarding acceptable behaviour, as well as arguments rooted in a legal-positivist stance which restricts corruption to what can be defined in the courtrooms.Rather, we are searching for novel or forgotten theories, or combinations of these, that can further understanding of corruption.Moreover, it is difficult to analyse – and even discuss – the concept of corruption because of the general assumption that corruption is bad for society.We believe that by undertaking more theoretical reflections on corruption, we can better take on the important task of thinking about the meaning of corruption – rather than to subdue our interests to the more practical concerns of eradicating corruption.Thus, we called for papers offering a critical study of corruption, and, further, we invited contributions that turn to theory to problematize and critique corruption.Our intention has been to go beyond descriptions of alleged corrupt behaviour or normative discussions of legitimacy of particular activities, through engagement in .Overall, the literature on corruption highlights the various ways in which the abuse of power is performed: for instance, the government official accepting a bribe or a kickback for his services (Rodriguez et al., 2005), or less overt exchanges such as gifts, favours, promises, symbolically sealed by surreptitious handshakes, and often embedded in, or consolidating, social networks (Bourdieu, 1977; Noonan, 1984; Granovetter, 2007).Stretching the notion of abuse of power even further, corruption may also involve practices such as violence, intimidation, harassment or bullying (Hearn and Parkin, 2001), thus highlighting the ‘dark side’ of organizational behaviour more broadly (Griffin and O’Leary, 2004).In organization studies, research has sought to describe and understand the organizational settings in which corruption takes place – whether by one or several members within an organization, by individuals on behalf of organizations, or by entire organizations in cases where corruption operates as an institutionalized practice (Pinto et al., 2008).Organizational scholars have emphasized that corruption should not only be regarded as a , i.e.