Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption awarded major grant from UK Government to help tackle global corruption
By: Stephanie Allen
Last updated: Thursday, 8 February 2024
The University of Sussex’s Centre for the Study of Corruption (CSC) has signed a grant, worth £3.4m, with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), to fund new research into global corruption.
The Governance & Integrity Anti-Corruption Evidence programme (GI ACE) will include new global corruption research at the University of Sussex, as well as awarding research grants to teams from around the world, to build a body of research that provides evidence for anti-corruption policy-making.
The CSC, which was founded in 2011, is the UK’s foremost academic centre dedicated to research, policy impact and teaching on corruption and anti-corruption measures. It uses world-class innovative academic approaches to track the nature of corrupt practices, as well as to test the effectiveness of anti-corruption measures.
CSC research covers corruption issues across the world (including Europe, China and Africa) and across politics, business and sport. Recent research includes work on corruption in government procurement and the role of lawyers in facilitating kleptocracy and grand corruption. The CSC faculty has just published a Dictionary of Corruption, with 320 entries on varieties of corruption and policy responses.
The GI ACE programme is led by renowned anti-corruption scholar, Professor Paul Heywood from the University of Nottingham, and Professor Heywood will be joining the University of Sussex as a Visiting Professor for the duration of the programme. The research builds on a previous research collaboration with Professor Paul Heywood and Washington-based group Global Integrity.
Sussex’s Professor Liz David-Barrett, Director of the CSC, and a globally recognised expert in the field of state capture, will be acting as Principal Investigator on the programme, conducting research with Professor Heywood under the theme ‘Rethinking Corruption’.
The GI ACE research will be part of the wider Anti-Corruption Evidence (ACE) programme, with the University of Sussex joining a high-profile collaboration with SOAS and University of Birmingham. ACE delivers new practical research about what works to tackle corruption, illicit financial flows and serious organised crime. The funding will run until September 2027.
Professor David-Barrett, Director of the University of Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption says: “The Anti-Corruption Evidence programme is providing crucial evidence on what works in tackling corruption and generating ideas for new approaches.
“Our 'Rethinking Corruption' research under this programme will draw on the lessons learned to map out strategic responses to corruption as it shifts shape in a world of populist politics, economic volatility, environmental crisis and geopolitical uncertainty.”
Eight international research projects are being awarded funding as part of the GI-ACE programme, examining the themes of: ‘Global finance and the enablers of corruption’; ‘Crisis responses and corruption in vulnerable sectors’; and ‘Corruption risks in global trade and commerce’.
Professor Sasha Roseneil, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sussex, says: “Arguably, we are living in a time when evidence-based strategies for tackling corruption are more important than ever. Over the last 13 years, the University of Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption has been building an international reputation for academic excellence and thought leadership.
“It is fantastic to see the contribution of Sussex academics to the field of global anti-corruption research being recognised by the UK Government with this substantial grant from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. I look forward to following the progress of the GI ACE programme under the excellent stewardship of the Centre for the Study of Corruption.”
The Centre has conducted research for various governments including the UK, as well as the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Its experts are a regular ‘go to’ for media for comment and expertise on breaking news and global issues.
The CSC is uniquely placed to train the next generation of anti-corruption experts. Many of its MA students, who come from all over the world, have gone on to work in various high-profile roles across government, civil society and the private sector.