Corruption: Where does it start?


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Corruption can be described as the lack of honesty or integrity or the use of one’s power or position for selfish and dishonest gain. The desire to gain material wealth fast without working for it is usually the leading cause of corruption (Johnston, 2005). Corruption comes in many forms, all of which benefit a few individuals, while at the same time harming most of the public. Some types of corruption include bribery, using one’s power or office to gain selfishly, channeling public funds to personal accounts among others. Corruption is prevalent in many institutions, not just public ones. Corruption occurs in courts of law, schools, in the corporate world and sometimes in churches and other religious organizations. Nevertheless, the most common type of corruption occurs in public offices and is mostly driven by political forces in governments (Transparency International, 2007). There are many organizations worldwide that try to fight corruption and the dangers it poses to societies. One such organization is the NGO Transparency International which, among other things, publishes an index of the most corrupt countries in the world.