Tolerance to Petty Corruption in Public Sector: A Review.

Byline: Jamil Ahmad, Alia Ahmad and Taseer Salahuddin


Corruption both at bigger or smaller level damages a society. Petty or low-level corruption, routine bribary, fraud, favoritism etc. are far more harmful due to its deep rooted nature and frequent intensity (Faisal and Jafri, 2017). This low level corruption can be seen in the public sector at due to the motivations of corrupt behaviors (Bicchieri, Ganegonda, 2016). Corruption till 1980 was considered a subject of sociological research, political science, criminal law, or the economics and was not paid as much attention however,nowadays it has become an important area of research especially in public sector (Ram. S Dubey, JyotiKhanna, 2015). The paradox of tolerance towards corruption is not an easy phenomenon to discuss or measure, having a dexterous nature in the public sector, bureaucracy and in various other political institutions.

Low level corruption is commonly bribery, fraud, nepotism, embezzlement, illegal grafting, kickbacks, favoritism, red tapism, theft, clientism and the cronyism. Low level corruption is one of the major in making and implementing fair policies and mechanisms to stabilize the economy of the country. As it encompasses a broad range of the attitudes, behaviors and the actions so it is multidimensional in nature. The vicious act of low level corruption creates a large gap between the different classes or groups of people in the societies affecting the common interest of individuals by usurping and grabbing the power (Fukuyama, 2014).

The purpose of this paper is to examine findings and systematically focus the meaning and understanding of tolerance to low level corruption in the public sectorand variousdeterminants of tolerance and to low level corruption in the public sector. To fulfill this purpose a comprehensive literature review has been done including studies from different aspects of petty corruption, its definition and nature, its determinants, its toilerance in public sector, its effects and impacts on the society as a whole.

For example, EugenDimant, GuglielmoTosato, (2017) examined the systematic classification and the various determinants and its major effects of the low level corruption according to empirical literature; Quah (2001)describes the phenomenon of low level corruption globalization in the public sector and how to combat it specifically in the Asian countries where tolerance to corruption consists of great disparity; Alexandra Mills (2012)provides the steps to prevent the paradox of low level corruption in the public sector, though this idea seems rigid, full of risks and disproportionate but goal to achieve the eradication of low level corruption make it fair and efficient; Joseph Pozsgai (2015) has been doing research in the prevention of corruption in public sector policies for the past six to eight years, so and so forth. Following review of literature builts the argument in a stp wise manner.

LITERATURE REVIEW What is Corruption?

Corruption has been defined in as dishonesty and abuse of power generally. Specifically few definitions of corruption include; Dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery.The action or effect of making someone or something morally depraved (Cambridge dictionary),Dishonest or illegal behavior, especially of people in authority allegations of bribery and corruption.The act or effect of making someone change from moral to immoral standards of behavior(Oxford Learner's Dictionary),Corruption is dishonesty and illegal behavior by people in positions of authority or power.the act of corrupting or state of being corrupt, moral perversion; depravity, dishonesty, espically bribery, putrefaction or decay, alteration, as of a manuscript, an altered form of a word (Collins English dictionary) etc.

Researchers have interpreted corruption as subjective phenomenon with vartious shades. Huberts(2010) considered the idea of corruption as the intricate one and not easy to understand because it comprised of various ideas which make the policy makers think its measures for control of corruption in the public sector by suggesting different analogy of elements. Johnston (1996) one line definition of word corruption is difficult to find out because there exists some attitudes or behaviors as far as the corruption is concerned that depicts this paradox. Tanzi (1998 and 2008) elaborate corruption as "like an elephant, even though it may be difficult to describe, it is generally not difficult to recognize when observed". RuA"gemer, (1996) considers corruption as hidden, furtive, intimate and the obscure community formed by the actors during which they privately get advantages and exchange the relationship secretly.

According to Van Duyne, Huberts, Jurkiewicz and Maesschalch, (2008) corruption no doubt is the contravention of norms and disgrace of the moral values as well as the immoral behavior in the public sector. For Tanzi, (1995) and Khan, (1996)Corruption is abuse of power, in which actors utilize the authority, position for personal benefits and interests.Park, (2003) cited in Rabl and Kuhlmann, (2008) states thatcorruption of wide range occurs by the mutual agreement and it is deliberately and intentionally exchange or transfer of rewards and various mutual benefits. Low level corruption can also be termed against the law as an act or corrupt behavior of bribery with the intention to give some interest or benefit to someone contradicting to his valid formal duties and work.

The analogy of term corruption is simply the unlawful and misuse of the powers in any public office for the purposes of the private gainNACS, (2002). Some other researchers and dictionaries with their elaborate definitions and interpretations of corruption include (Lasthuizen, Huberts, and Kaptein (2002); McMullan, (1996); Simpson, (1977); Weber, (1964) and The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential, (2017).

What is Public sector?

(Collins Dictionary) describes the phenomenon of the term public sector is "that part of a country's economy, which is controlled or supported financially by the government or the part of an economy that consists of state-owned institutions, including nationalized industries and services provided by local authorities."(Investorwords, WebFinance, 2016) describes public sector comprises of public enterprises and the public services which include the governmental services of every kind, whether infrastructural, educational, health, military or the police etc which are paying services and benefiting the society.(Margaret Rouse, 2015) viewed the enigma of the public sector that can be easily termed as that area of a whole economic system of any country regulated by the local, national, state or the provincial government.

In the 21st century technology has been playing its major role in various areas including the public sector by formulating different policies, methods, plans and the standards for the benefit of the country(Huberts 2010). But unfortunately, low level corruption can easily be seen by the bureaucrats and the public officials while performing their duties, technology should make solutions to bring transparency and pellucidity in the public sector. The major key phenomenon of the corruption is for the attaining of money either via extortion, bribery or the by fraud in transactions resulting in the high risk of the illegal attitude of the tolerance to the low level corruption.

What is Corruption tolerance?

According to Cambridge dictionary tolerance is "willingness to accept behavior and beliefs that are different from your own, although you might not agree with or approve of them." Whereas corruption tolerance is defined by Koudelkova(2015) as "Tolerance of the Low level corruption in the public sector is a well known social enigma, having the cataclysmic, pernicious and the lethal effect due to the absence of accountability, unsuitable, working conditions, the greed of power or thirst and the sense of insecurity".Similarly Tverdova, (2007) states that corruption tolerance exists in society because of its acceptance and unethical practices in the public sector to meet their demands from an unlawful and illegal way. Corruption tolerance effect the regime of public sector specifically Seligson, (2002). The recognition of ransom, extortion or bribery can be considered as the tolerance of corruption Manzetti and Wilson, (2009).

According to Gillespie and Okruhlik, (1991) Impropriety should be eradicated to...

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