Title

Corruption, democracy and Asia-Pacific countries

Document Type

Journal Article

Publisher

Routledge

Faculty

Faculty of Business and Law

School

School of Business

RAS ID

17389

Comments

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of the Asia Pacific Economy on 8 April 2013 as: Campbell, N., & Saha, S. (2013). Corruption, democracy and Asia-Pacific countries. Journal of the Asia Pacific Economy, 18(2), 290-303. Available online here

Abstract

This paper argues that the relationship between democracy and corruption is non-monotonic. When a country shifts from autocratic rule to highly imperfect democracy (an 'electoral democracy') it is frequently perceived that the level of corruption increases. Conversely, when the democracy level is already relatively high (approaching 'mature democracy') an increase in the level of democracy is typically expected to decrease the level of corruption. To assist with our discussion of these issues, before going on to the empirical part of the paper, we look specifically at the case of South Korea to illustrate how corruption responded to an increasing level of democracy. Using panel data, we find strong empirical support for the non-monotonic relationship. For Asia-Pacific countries, we find that the democracy-corruption relationship becomes negative, at a surprisingly high level of democracy. Moreover we also find that the South Asian region is the most corrupt.

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