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May 2012

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This submission covers two areas within Transparency International UK’s specific area of expertise.  It is not intended to raise or examine the full range of ethical issues that will be the subject of the LevesonInquiry.  The subject areas covered by this submission are:
  • Areas in which sections of the  UK media may have acted corruptly
  • Areas in which there is no evidence of corruption by, or caused by, the UK media, but in which the environment created may be conducive to corruption.
More specifically, this submission covers
  • The importance of press freedom
  • The role of investigative journalism
  • Bribery
  • Media regulation
  • Concentration of media ownership
  • Relationships between the media and politicians
  • Detrimental impacts of systemic corruption.
Transparency International’s definition of corruption is ‘the abuse of entrusted power for private gain.’ This is a widely-used definition of corruption and encompasses behaviours and activities that may be illegal or legal but unethical.
 
In some areas, this submission makes recommendations.  However, the primary purpose of this submission is to draw the Leveson Inquiry’s attention to the issue of corruption, and to note that corruption is an important issue for the Inquiry to address in the context of the UK media.


May 2012

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The Bond Anti-Corruption Group conducted an independent, parallel review of the United Kingdom’s compliance with two chapters (3 and 4) of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).


May 2012

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The House of Lords Select Committee on Economic Affairs undertook an inquiry into the economic impact and effectiveness of development aid. TI-UK made a written submission focussing on the need for greater transparency and accountability in the provision and use of development aid.


May 2012

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The annual Anti-Corruption Lecture is organised by Transparency International UK to mark the United Nations International Anti-Corruption Day. The 2011 lecture was delivered by The Rt Hon Clare Short Chair of the International Board of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and former UK Secretary of State for International Development. Ms Short spoke on “Transparency in Practice: lessons from international development and EITI”.


May 2012

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The nature of cricket and corruption have both changed in the past decade.  Transparency International (TI) welcomes the launch of ICC’s Governance Review, as it is a timely opportunity to review the corruption risks facing the game of cricket, and strengthen the game’s institutional response.

TI believes that: 
•Urgent action is needed to understand and address the changing nature of the corruption risks that face the game of cricket in the 21st century;
•The ICC needs to widen the focus of its response to encompass the larger corruption challenges facing the game;
•This will require the ICC  to take more responsibility for standard-setting applicable to the cricket boards of member countries;
•The ICC itself needs to be more accountable and transparent;
•The ICC should seek to follow international best practice in the sphere of governance, including transparency and anti-corruption measures.  This best practice may be found in other sporting bodies, governments, non-profit organisations or business. 
 
TI makes 20 specific recommendations, to be found below in Section 10.  TI would welcome the ICC’s response to these recommendations and a dialogue on how they might be taken forward.  


May 2012

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Doing Business Without Bribery is a free online training module which provides best practice anti-bribery training, and enables companies to benchmark their own training programmes. These PowerPoint slides can be used to facilitate a 2 hour group training session. A Trainer’s Handbook is also available.


May 2012

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Summary
 
TI-UK believes that the revolving door between government and the private sector can be of benefit to both sectors, provided the system for regulating movements of personnel is sufficiently transparent and robust in order to ensure that there is no cause for any suspicion of impropriety. Unfortunately, several scandals in recent years have revealed that the current system for regulating the revolving door is weak and in urgent need of reform. These weaknesses were assessed in the TI-UK 2011 Report, ‘Cabs for Hire – Fixing the Revolving Door between Government and Business.’ TI-UK believes the following recommendations for reforms, if implemented, would help to reduce the risk of conflicts of interest and make the revolving door work to the benefit of government, the private sector and UK society more broadly:   
 
TI-UK Recommendations
 
i.The Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACoBA) should be replaced with a new statutory body with sufficient resources and powers to regulate the post-public employment of former Ministers and crown servants. The rulings of this new body should be mandatory and enforceable;  
 
ii.The composition of the new body should be more representative of UK society – for example, by including representatives of civil society;  
 
iii.The new body should begin its work by carrying out a thorough audit of all positions under its remit, to assess potential risk areas.  New rules could then be drafted to reflect the severity of risk associated with particular roles (e.g. those that involve major decisions on public procurement of goods and services from the private sector).  It should be mandatory for the new regulatory body to consult departments for advice on the risks associated with particular appointments;  
 
iv.The period during which former Ministers and crown servants must undergo scrutiny for appointments in the private sector should be extended from two years to three.  The implications of this change for recruiting individuals to government should be fully assessed;  
 
v.Parliament should enact legislation as soon as possible in order to make it mandatory for individuals andorganisations engaged in significant lobbying activity to register and disclose information on their activities.   
  
vi.The remit of regulation should be extended  to include appointments to non-commercial entities;
 
vii.The new body should disclose full information about the procedures for assessing applications and the reasons for its judgements; and 
 
viii.The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority should draw up post-public employment rules for MPs – this is an area that is not regulated at present.   


May 2012

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The cases cited in this paper suggest that UK politicians fail to see the risks of close relationships with lobbyists, and in particular business lobbyists, and are not able to maintain the safeguards that are essential to ensuring integrity. Politicians appear far too willing to accept corporate and media hospitality, refusing to acknowledge that, even if they are not engaged in anything untoward, such behaviour fails to meet the ‘appearance standard’ and thus erodes public trust.      

The coalition government has taken some steps in the right direction. It has changed the ministerial code to require ministers to declare all meetings with lobbyists and it has banned lobbying by former ministers for two years after they leave office. The next step should be to enact legislation in 2012/13 that would introduce a robust statutory register of lobbyists. A new regulatory regime for lobbying will help to ensure there is greater transparency and reduce the risk of corrupt lobbying activity.


May 2012

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TI-UK is part of a group of UK-based civil society organisations involved in promoting access to information and government transparency in both the UK and internationally. The group has sent a letter to the Cabinet Office regarding the UK’s upcoming chairmanship of the Open Government Partnership.


May 2012

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TI-UK has made a submission to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards’ public consultation on the guide to the rules relating to the conduct of Members of Parliament.


Mar 2012

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The UK Bribery Act, which was passed in 2010, introduces an offence of corporate failure to prevent bribery.

The defence for a company against this liability is to prove that it had ‘adequate procedures’ in place to
prevent bribery.
               
This Guidance from Transparency International UK is designed to assist companies to comply
with the Bribery Act by providing clear, practical advice on good practice anti-bribery systems that in
Transparency International’s opinion constitute ‘adequate procedures’ for compliance with the Bribery Act.
 
We also provide a variety of general and specialist training courses as well as a number of advisory services that can be found here.
         
The following documents are also available: 
 
This publication is provided free of charge by Transparency International UK. We depend on donations to allow us to continue our work. A contribution of £25 per reader will enable us to do so. If you would like to make a donation of any size, please click here.


Mar 2012

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Doing Business Without Bribery is a self-study e-learning course with which the participant will learn how to prevent and resist bribery in their business and comply with bribery laws. The course starts with an overview of bribery, followed by a set of in-depth realistic scenarios that require the participant to make decisions in familiar situations, and ends with a summary of bribery laws and offences. The course features clear and practical advice from TI-UK throughout.

The course has been produced by TI-UK with the support of FTI Consulting and Skillcast and has been updated in June 2013.   
 
Click on the link to access our free online training module Doing Business Without Bribery
 
This Trainer’s Handbook is part of a set of complementary training tools produced by TI-UK, that include a powerpoint-based course and an e learning module. Please note that the PowerPoint slides and the Trainer’s Handbook are currently in the process of being updated and are not in accordance with the newly updated training module. These are all available free of charge at: www.transparency.org.uk/training
 

We also provide a variety of general and specialist training courses that can be found here.


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