The Role of Social Norms in Fighting Corruption in Local Governments

Regional Focus: Vietnam
Sustainable Development Goal #16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
Time: December 2018 – October 2022

The overall aim of the project is to further contribute to the understanding of dynamics that underlie corruption, and the significance of local informal social norms, in relation to international anti-corruption conventions and national law, when building counteraction strategies on a local level. The overall aim raises the following core project objectives:

To systematically review the scholarly literature on corruption from a multi-level perspective (global, national and local), with the purpose of underlining the importance of a local approach.

To conduct an ethnographic case study of informal practices and anti-corruption efforts concerning schools in a specific city in Vietnam.

To apply participatory design principles, involving a school in the selected district, when developing an anti-corruption intervention that can serve as a model for counteracting corruption on local levels in different countries. The intervention design will be informed by the literature review and the ethnographic case study.

To assess the intervention design by applying and testing it in multiple locations/countries. The intention is to make use of the ICLD network of participants, in Municipal Partnerships and International training programmes, for this part of the study. The assessment will involve both indepth interviews and surveys.

To create teaching materials, based on the findings of the overall project, that can be used within the ICLD International training programmes and in other contexts where anti-corruption efforts on a local level are in focus.

Societal Relevance:
In Vietnam, the corruption maintains a substantial issue and impacts life of families on all levels of the society. Many children and their parents are exposed to the informal structures during the school years. According to a newspaper article from 2011, 62% of parents participating in a survey admitted having used either money or personal contact to register their children in desired schools. (Dinh-Cu, 2008; Dan Tri, 2011; Phuong, 2017) This project will conduct a review of all relevant literature, legislation and other policy documents in relation to the intervention and make it applicable within the ICLD network of participants in the Municipal partnership and International training programmes.

Måns Svensson, Associate Professor at Lund University, Sweden.

Andreas Mattsson, lecturer and program director at School of Journalism at Department of Communication and Media, Lund University.

In collaboration with a local researcher in Vietnam.