: Public service ethics, anti-corruption measures, transparency
Kim, Jae Young
A corruption-free environment is an indispensible prerequisite for a government to strengthen its competitiveness and to be able to build trust in society. However, recent data show that the transparency index of Korea is the lowest among OECD countries. Also serious is a declining trend of transparency index of the public organizations in Incheon. In this paper, I try to delineate the many factors causing corruption and to propose what the city should do to fight public sector corruption. Korean local governments have only limited power and tools to implement anti-corruption measures because most corruption behaviors are deeply rooted to the nation's culture and tradition, which even a strong leadership in the central government would not be able to handle effectively. Yet, I propose three alternatives for local governments: a) promotion and protection of whistle-blowing in public organizations; b) public ethics education; and c) clarity in public organizations by reducing information asymmetry between governments and citizens. These measures are not merely tools of anti-corruption but also will contribute to the enhancement of democracy and efficiency in local governance.
Key-words: Corruption-free Environment, Ethics or Public Service, Causes of Corruption