CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, December 18, 2009

Davis on Anti-Corruption Law and Developing Countries

Davis kevin Kevin E. Davis  (New York University - School of Law) has posted Does the Globalization of Anti-Corruption Law Help Developing Countries? (INTERNATIONAL LAW, ECONOMIC GLOBALIZATION AND DEVELOPMENT, Julio Faundez and Celine Tan, eds., E. Elgar, 2010) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

What role do foreign institutions play in combating political corruption in developing countries? This chapter begins by describing the recently developed transnational anti-corruption regime, which encompasses legal instruments ranging from the dedicated multilateral agreements sponsored by the OECD and the United Nations, to the anti-corruption policies of international financial institutions, to components of the international antimony laundering regime, international norms governing government procurement, and private law norms concerning enforcement of corruptly procured contracts. It also surveys the evidence concerning a variety of claims about the potential advantages and disadvantages of having foreign institutions play a role in preventing, sanctioning, or providing redress for corruption on the part of local public officials. One of the main conclusions is that more attention ought to be paid to whether foreign institutions displace and undermine, or alternatively complement and enhance, local anti-corruption institutions. The analysis not only sheds light on the transnational anti-corruption regime, but also has implications for other efforts to rely on foreign legal institutions to address the problems of developing countries.

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In his artcile Kevin Davis raises an important -- but rarely asked -- question about whether there are any negative consequences to developing countries relying on foreign legal institutions to lead their anti-corruption efforts. As a lawyer who helps multi-national companies develop anti-corruption policies and investigate potential violations, I find that the international standards developed in the West are often assumed to be the gold standard and they are applied to companies working in both developed and developing countries.

It would be ideal to give legal institutions in developing countries more power to craft their own anti-corruption initiatives with the help and support of outside institutions.

Posted by: Robert Heim | Feb 9, 2010 8:30:04 AM

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