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Towards Narrowing the Corruption Space

This three-day professional development workshop provides an excellent foundation for evolving strategies for narrowing the corruption space in the practice of public finance management (PFM).   The losses due to the presence of “ghosts” on the payroll can lead to losses of as high as 40% of wages and salaries and is typically 5% to 10%.   Losses due to public procurement and abuses to tax collection mean substantial public finance losses to many countries that desperately need resources to meet their development goals.  It is designed principally for non PFM professionals who are involved in policy work, sector programmes, or have management responsibilities in government ministries, departments and agencies. It has been designed specifically with the developing country context in mind. 

Upcoming training workshop

  • Course name:

    Towards Narrowing the Corruption Space

  • Dates:

    to be scheduled
  • Duration:

    3 days
  • Venue:

    Accra, Ghana
  • Price:

    1500 US$
  • Course evaluation        4.414.414.414.414.41

  • Description

    Corruption is wide spread in the public finance management systems of a number of developing countries.  This phenomenon may be written off as indicative of moral or cultural deficiencies.  But pursuing that rationale does not lead to productive ways of curbing corruption.  In practice, many developing countries experience corruption principally in the areas of revenue management and public procurement – both areas where the public sector interfaces with the private sector.

    The incidence of corruption increases with the levels of opportunity and discretion of public officials and decreases with the transparency of public finance procedures, the effectiveness and application of sanctions and also the capacity of the professional cadres.   These findings point to ways for effectively narrowing the corruption space.


    The course covers a broad scope of areas and mechanisms of abuse including:

    • The negotiation of mineral, mining  and oil contracts;
    • The disposal of national assets including spectrum and communication licenses
    • The collection of taxes and application of tax penalties and waivers;
    • The opportunities for double dippers;
    • The persistence of substantial proportion of “ghosts” on national payrolls in developing countries
    • Abuse in public corporations
    • Rent seeking in public procurement;
    • Manipulation of contract variations and techniques applied in negotiated debt and judgement payments


    The course also considers the political economy dynamics that can further contribute to corrupt practice.

  • Objective

    The principal professional workshop objective is to provide participants with the introductory tools to effectively understand the mechanisms employed for corrupt practices in public finance management and to discuss effective ways to limit such practices.   Further it is to allow discussion and interaction with other participants who may share common challenges.

  • Audience

    The target audience is Government officials, Parliamentarians, NGOs and Development advisors whose work is involved in public finance management in developing countries, or for investors wishing to operate in developing countries.  

  • Pre-requisites

    This course is designed for people with little or no experience with public finance management; however it will be useful for participants to familiarize themselves with basic economic and accounting concepts and terminology prior to attending the course.  

  • Learning outcomes

    By the end of the course participants should:


    • Be equipped with some basic frameworks for identifying the strengths and weaknesses of a country’s PFM systems and how that may enhance or limit opportunities for corruption
    • Look at such recent initiatives as Extraction Industries Transparency Initiative, the Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability Assessment Tool, the OECD/DAC National Procurement Assessment Tool in better being able to both identify areas of possible corruption.
    • Appreciate what we can learn from the Corruption Perception Index Rankings
    • Be able to question the impact of some popularly promoted PFM reforms – such as performance budgeting, budgeting by objectives, activity based budgeting, the use of Medium Term Expenditure Frameworks, accrual accounting, IFMIS, and public-private partnerships that can impact upon and create even greater opportunities for abuse and corruption.
  • Learning methods

    The learning methods will include the following

    • Introduction to key concepts through the “teaching and discussion” methods
    • The use of original source material of key writers/thinkers in this area
    • The use of extensive examples from many different countries with different experiences to illustrate the points put across
    • The use of exercises (in particular short "buzz-group" sessions) to provoke and consolidate certain points raises
    • The use of major case studies –to illustrate in more detail some of the key points of the course.
  • Course code:

  • Programme:

    Public Finance Management
  • Level:

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