Corruption and Human Rights: Exploring the Relationships

Human Rights & Human Welfare, Working Paper No. 70, University of Denver

Posted: 4 Jun 2012 Last revised: 11 Dec 2015

See all articles by Berihun Adugna Gebeye

Berihun Adugna Gebeye

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law

Date Written: June 4, 2012

Abstract

Corruption is a global phenomenon which every society faces though its degree of severity varies from country to country. Despite its long history, there is no single universally agreed upon definition of corruption. Moreover, its causes, forms and impacts are diverse and multi-faceted. Understanding corruption by itself is a complex undertaking. However, it is agreed that corruption is inimical to public administration, undermines democracy, degrades the moral fabrics of the society and violates human rights. The pain of corruption touches all the human family but it disproportionately affects the vulnerable sections of society. It reinforces discrimination, exclusion and arbitrariness. Corruption is a universal problem undermining universal value- human rights. However, on the contrary, guarantying human rights in general and ensuring non-discrimination and participation in particular are useful preventive tools for corruption as they ultimately empower the society and create social accountability. The article explores the relationships between corruption and human rights. It is argued that, the struggle to promote human rights and the campaign against corruption share a great deal of common ground. Both are struggling for the orderly and decent life of humans rooted in dignity and equality. The article concludes the discussion by asserting that an integral approach is essential to overcome the problems of corruption and the violations of human rights.

Keywords: Corruption, human rights, human dignity, integral approach, anti-corruption activists, human rights activists, vulnerable sections of the society

Suggested Citation

Gebeye, Berihun Adugna, Corruption and Human Rights: Exploring the Relationships (June 4, 2012). Human Rights & Human Welfare, Working Paper No. 70, University of Denver , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2075766 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2075766

Berihun Adugna Gebeye (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law ( email )

Im Neuenheimer Feld 535
69120 Heidelberg, 69120
Germany

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