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Corruption in contemporary politicsA new travel guide$
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James L. Newell

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780719088919

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719088919.001.0001

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Definitions of political corruption, and why study corruption

Definitions of political corruption, and why study corruption

(p.1) 1 Definitions of political corruption, and why study corruption
Corruption in contemporary politics

James L. Newell

Manchester University Press

Low and declining levels of trust in politicians, prompted in part by perceptions that they are too often to be found engaged in corruption and other forms of wrong-doing has in recent years turned corruption itself into a high-profile political issue. Against this background, the chapter considers what political corruption is, or might be, for the study of anything requires having a clear understanding of its nature. Then it discusses the different types of corruption to be found, and finally it says something about why their study might be important. The chapter argues that, understood as the adulteration of public by private interests, corruption is a relatively modern notion; suggests that it is possible to distinguish between four types of corruption understood in principal-agent terms, and makes the case that corruption is, as an object of study, important for its incidence and its effects.

Keywords:   Public interests, Private interests, Principal-agent definitions

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