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Three Essays on the Politics of Anticorruption

Ivan Krastev is a political scientist and Chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies in Sofia, Bulgaria.

With a foreword by Aryeh Neier, President of the Open Society Institute and Soros foundations network

A global anticorruption crusade is underway. "As slavery was once a way of life and now has become obsolete and incomprehensible, so the practice of bribery will become obsolete," a modern-day moralist has said. But how is global consensus on corruption possible? Why are anticorruption campaigns running out of steam, and why are post-communist societies obsessed with corruption?
This book is not a study of anti-corruption policies. Instead, it looks at the politics of anti-corruption. Policies are what institutions do. But in analyzing politics, this book seeks to discover why institutions do what they do. The author delves into political motivations at a time when "combating corruption" is the fashion among the academic community.
Krastev argues that anticorruption sentiments are not driven by the actual level of corruption but by general disappointment with liberal reforms that cause rising social inequality. In this collection of essays, the author makes the provocative argument that the current corruption-focused policies are doomed.

"Shifting Obsessions should stimulate a more healthy, sorely needed debate on corruption, anti-corruption policy, and the politics of anti-corruption. It could contribute to the encouragement of anti-corruption policies divorced from rhetoric and linked more closely to local problems. For these two reasons alone, it is one of the most important contributions to the anti-corruption debate in recent years." - TOL

List of Figures; Foreword Aryeh Neier; Preface; Acknowledgements; When "Should" Does not Imply "Can"; The Making of Washington Consensus on Corruption; Corruption, Anticorruption Sentiments and the Rule of Law; The Missing Incentive: Corruption, Anticorruption, and Reelection with Georgy Ganev

120 pages
ISBN 978-963-9241-94-7 paperback $14.95 / €12.95 / £9.99