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Daniel Kaufmann Lecture: 'State Capture and the Challenge of Governance around the World'

21 September 2018 5:00AM SAST

  • Event

  • Ending 6:30AM SAST

This seminar was hosted by professor Haroon Bhorat, director of the Development Policy Research Unit (DPRU), and the University of Cape Town‘s School of Economics.Visit the UCT event page here
Daniel Kaufmann is the president and CEO of the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI). Following his testimony on 19 September at the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture, and coinciding with the release of the annual Worldwide Governance Indicators, which he co-authors, Kaufmann presented a lecture on the changing nature of corruption around the world, based on data and experience. (Slides Kaufmann showed during his presentation are here.) In discussing the implications for reform, he emphasized one of the most important forms of "grand corruption"; namely the challenge of state capture.

Kaufmann (with Joel Hellman) developed and measured this concept two decades ago, studying the phenomenon in depth, first in former socialist countries in transition, and subsequently in other regions of the world, including Latin America.
In recent times, South Africa has fully embraced this approach, both in its inquiry of high-level corruption under the previous leadership, and now in figuring out what can be done to address it. Kaufmann does not present himself as an expert on South Africa – instead, he places this challenge within a broader framework of governance and institutional reforms. He will share relevant comparative evidence and insights from his work on state capture and governance worldwide, also discussing implications from particular country cases such as Brazil, Peru and the U.S. He will also address sectoral dimensions, particularly for natural resources.
In parallel, the newest set of updated Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) was issued the same day, 21 September. For over 20 years, Kaufmann and co-author Aart Kraay have been assessing the state of governance around the world, annually issuing the set of six indicators. Kaufmann briefly showcased salient results from the new release, comparing some countries and regions.