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Combating Corruption in International Business: The Big Questions

17 Pages Posted: 23 Aug 2015 Last revised: 29 Oct 2015

David Hess

The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan

Date Written: August 21, 2015

Abstract

The last several years have seen a significant rise in the efforts of governments to combat the supply side of corruption. Due to these increased efforts, now is an important time to ask some of the big questions in combating corruption. In short, my big questions relate to understanding why corporations pay bribes, what corporations need to do to stop paying bribes, and how to encourage corporations to actively fight corruption (that is, to combat corruption beyond their organizational boundaries). The first section of the essay addresses the question: why do corporations pay bribes? This leads to two additional questions: why do employees pay bribes, and when are compliance and ethics programs effective in preventing the payment of bribes? The next big question focuses on issues of corporate social responsibility: what should a corporation do to combat corruption? That is, is it sufficient for a corporation to simply ensure that its employees do not pay bribes, or should the corporation do something more?

Notes: This essay is based on remarks given at a 2014 symposium on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act hosted by the Ohio Northern University Law Review.

Keywords: FCPA, Corruption, Bribery, CSR, Corporate Social Responsibility, Business Ethics

JEL Classification: M14

Suggested Citation

Hess, David, Combating Corruption in International Business: The Big Questions (August 21, 2015). Ohio North University Law Review, Forthcoming; Ross School of Business Paper No. 1286. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2649121 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2649121

David Hess (Contact Author)

The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan ( email )

701 Tappan Street
Ann Arbor, MI MI 48109
United States
734-763-9779 (Phone)

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