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How strong is the influence of Corruption on Innovation, especially in post-communist EU Member States? - A Comparative Analysis

Golla, Julia (2010) How strong is the influence of Corruption on Innovation, especially in post-communist EU Member States? - A Comparative Analysis.

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Abstract:Corruption is not a topic only concerning developing or underdeveloped countries. It is present in the EU and it has growing tendencies as the current disaster in Greece shows. Nowadays especially the former east block states which accessed the EU in 2004 and 2007 are fighting against corruption on all possible levels of governance. But until now these transition economies are not effective enough to fight against corruption. What is alarming, is that the Corruption perception index (CPI) measured by Transparency International (TI) is even increasing since the accession of the transition economies to the EU (TI, 2010). The declining degree of accountability in public administration of these new Member States might be caused by the growing opportunities for abusing stated funds or other illicit profitmaking offered by the EU. On the other hand these funds (ERDF, Cohesion, ESF) from the EU, are supporting EU cohesion especially in integrating the EU10 countries. As a consequence they should play an important role in economic convergence to the old Member States. However, we must ask the question if this money is responsibly invested? According to the information of the European Innovation Scoreboard (EIS) the progress of the transition economies in the field of innovation is still rather low some voices even from the scientific point of view state that innovation in some regions of EU-CEE is just a tool to fraudulently obtain money from the EU. “The Polish system of regional policy is (…) almost exclusively focused on the absorption of the European Union funds” (Grosse, 2006: 62). These kinds of statements are strongly burdening to the coherent trust of the (core) EU States among each other. To find out what are the real reasons for low improvement in the sector of innovation in EU transition economies it is necessary to analyse possible obstacles to innovation. This research will conduct exactly this analysis while it is dedicated to a rather sensitive topic: the topic of corruption and its relation to innovation. So I will ask the question if there is a scientifically significant relationship between the factors corruption and innovation. We will do a direct comparison of quantitative data of innovation and corruption for a realistic overview to reveal the influence of corruption on innovation. But we also know the limitations of the figures. Both fields of research are not yet discovered scientifically as related topics. Even though it seems to be logical that a corrupt society damps the possibilities for innovators not only from the economic side but also from the governmental part of society, the factor of corruption is not yet officially considered as an obstacle to innovation. We will see that there is really a connection between the level of innovation and corruption and that new member states in general suffer more from the influence of corruption to innovation. But also some mediterranean states are highly affected by high corruption and low innovation rates. This research might help to pave the way for more attention to the indicator ‘corruption’ in the context of innovation e.g. in implementation as parameter in EU’s EIS. Moreover it identifies that a country’s past or its long-established structures must be taken into account when EU actors try to solve problems like low innovation in the post-communist, new member states.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:88 social and public administration
Programme:European Studies BSc (56627)
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