Measurement of Validity of Corruption Indices

25 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2017

See all articles by Anastasiia Shukhova

Anastasiia Shukhova

University of Mannheim

Yulii Nisnevich

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Date Written: January 18, 2017


Corruption is an intrinsically latent phenomenon, which makes it a challenging task to measure it and requires the use of indirect indicators. The academic community and non-government organizations have proposed various indices that differ in terms of their methodology, data and coverage. In this paper, we estimate construct validity of the most widely used indices of corruption: The Corruption Perceptions Index, The Control of Corruption Index, The Bribing and Corruption Index, The Corruption Index, and The Rule of Law: Absence of Corruption. In this paper we show that Corruption Index by the International Country Risk Guide and Absence of Corruption Index are not constructively valid and, therefore, are not suitable for the use in scholarly research. We also show that all indices provide poor estimates of a corruption level in the highly corrupted group of countries.

Keywords: corruption index, validity

JEL Classification: C01, C23, P50

Suggested Citation

Shukhova, Anastasiia and Nisnevich, Yulii, Measurement of Validity of Corruption Indices (January 18, 2017). Higher School of Economics Research Paper No. WP BRP 42/PS/2017, Available at SSRN: or

Anastasiia Shukhova (Contact Author)

University of Mannheim ( email )

Universitaetsbibliothek Mannheim
Mannheim, 68131

Yulii Nisnevich

National Research University Higher School of Economics ( email )

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017

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