Joint Evaluation of Support to Anti-Corruption Efforts (2002-2009) - Synthesis report

Date: June 2012
Type: Evaluation Reports


Has the donors’ approach to anti-corruption (AC) work been adapted to circumstances in the countries? What are the results of support for combating different types of corruption, including forms that affect poor people and women in particular? This evaluation provides insights for the debate, drawing on recent evidence from Bangladesh, Nicaragua, Tanzania, Viet Nam and Zambia.

The evaluation was managed by the Evaluation Department of the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) and commissioned by this agency together with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Danish International Development Assistance (Danida), the Swedish Agency for Development Evaluation (SADEV), the Swedish International Development Co-operation Agency (Sida) and the UK Department for International Development (DFID).


The report finds that although donors have helped to strengthen country institutions and systems in support of AC in all five countries, these intermediate results have not translated into reduced levels of corruption at national levels. Nonetheless, the fact that corruption is now more openly discussed and grassroots monitoring has shown positive results in strengthening local accountability show the beginning of a cultural shift to which donors can contribute. At the same time, the risk of aid misuse remains significant and recent aid-related corruption scandals in the public sector show that aid, when inadequately managed, can perpetuate rent-seeking behaviour. Vigilance as well as better programming can help.


  • Make donor approaches to AC more explicit, coherent, and evidence-based.
  • Invest in evidence gathering and public dissemination. Make good governance and AC-specific interventions more joined-up and risk-aware.
  • Take a sectoral approach to AC, with special emphasis on poverty and gender.
  • Stop working with institutions in isolation and start promoting interagency partnerships.
  • Adopt a more coordinated approach to AC. Use the opportunity of short-term, reaction-driven inputs to reinforce long-term, preventive interventions.
  • Adopt a ‘do no harm’ approach to aid, acknowledging that aid can perpetrate corrupt practices.


List of abbreviations
Executive summary
1. Introduction
2. Methodology
3. Country and donor context
4. Relevance of donor anti-corruption interventions
5. Effectiveness of donor anti-corruption interventions
6. Coordination, dialogue, programme management and donors’ links with anti-corruption
7. Conclusions, lessons and recommendations