Message received? How messages about corruption shape perceptions

Most anticorruption programmes include awareness raising about corruption and about efforts to tackle it. Yet so far there is little research evidence to show what impact such messages have. How – if at all – do they influence people’s beliefs about corruption or about fighting it?
 
This paper reports on an original survey experiment across 1,000 households in Jakarta that tested how four different messages affected respondents’ perceptions of corruption.
 
As expected, ‘negative’ messages on the widespread prevalence of corruption heightened worries about its ill effects, depressed confidence in the government’s anticorruption work and reduced the belief that ordinary people could easily join the fight against corruption. Surprisingly, however, ‘positive’ messages about government successes in controlling corruption and about how to get involved in tackling it tended to have the same effects. The paper discusses ways to make sense of these findings and what they could mean for anticorruption efforts.

About DLP

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate political settlements and institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

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News

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Thursday 30th March 2017

Putting the concept of Thinking and Working Politically into practice was at the heart of a workshop on 15-16 March attended by more than 200 delegates from the field of international development. Delegates from the government, civil service and local organisations of the host country, Indonesia, were joined by academics, including DLP researchers, and staff from donor organisations and NGOs.

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DLP shares research at FCO Africa Study Day

Monday 27th March 2017

DLP findings on the Democratic Republic of Congo were among the topics discussed with with UK diplomats and civil servants at the FCO's Africa Study Day, held at Sandhurst on 21 March. This year's Foreign and Commonwealth Office event was organised by University of Birmingham's International Development Department, home to DLP.

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