A crowdsourced corruption reporting social media for transparency
Subash ChapagainSep 08, 2020
Can we work together to bring down the corruption levels to the lowest possible at a global scale?
Overwhelming evidence from all over the world as reported in research and news shows that corruption (classically bribery, clientelism and embezzlement) is one of the major setbacks to global development. There is enough data to suggest the negative correlation between corruption levels and indicators of progress like per capita income and GDP.
Not just in the developing world, but also in the developed global north , institutional corruption is a problem that directly hurts the lives of the public citizens, as reported by Transparency International, the leading NGO at the forefront of fight against corruption. Yearly, all scales of corrupt activities from a small, under-the-table bribe to a massive misappropriation of public funds have been accounted for economic loss and increase in the wealth inequality that economists describe as the next big problem for humanity.
Corruption is sometimes hard to tackle precisely because it is common, so people perceive it to be a natural economic transaction: it is easier to act corruptly if many other individuals think it is okay to be corrupt. As such, global citizens need to come up with some ingenious ways to tackle this collective problem. One of such solutions could be a crowdsourced corruption reporting platform that is regulated and fostered by the public themselves.
As the current world is connected more than ever, the idea behind this kind of citizen-centred participatory platform mainly stands on the few basic mechanisms through which the platform can assist in the fight against the corruption:
These tools (or forums) offer easy access to an instantaneous anonymous reporting tool, hence empowering the public to report and complain safely, loudly and visibly whenever they find any kind of bribery or corruption undergoing.
Crowd reporting helps break the silence around the daily occurrence of corruption and entitles the participants with a feeling of belonging to a larger group that deserves better.
This kind of applications/platforms can foster collective thinking and actions when it comes to a broader agenda that affects everyone more or less equally.
Nevertheless, such a forum’s success in assisting the battle against corruption will largely depend on the contextualization and widespread dissemination. Voluntary public participation is the key to such platforms, and it should be appealing to every citizen of the concerned community/country. Only when a majority of the public joins the movement, such a forum will come victorious and bring about transparency in the society and public institutions.
What do you think would be the best approaches to build such a platform? What factors should be taken into account?
Ugur, M. (2013). CORRUPTION’S DIRECT EFFECTS ON PER-CAPITA INCOME GROWTH: A META-ANALYSIS. Journal of Economic Surveys, 28(3), 472–490. https://doi.org/10.1111/joes.12035
Lučić, D., Radišić, M., & Dobromirov, D. (2016). Causality between corruption and the level of GDP. Economic Research-Ekonomska Istraživanja, 29(1), 360–379. https://doi.org/10.1080/1331677x.2016.1169701
Roberto Martinez B. Kukutschka, Transparency International, Technology against corruption: the potential of online corruption reporting apps and other platforms, 28 November 2016
Zinnbauer, D. 2015. ‘Crowdsourced Corruption
Reporting: What Petrified Forests, Street Music,
Bath Towels, and the Taxman Can Tell Us about
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