Cover art for podcast DATA TALKS - wwu.usp

DATA TALKS - wwu.usp

10 EpisodesProduced by DATA TALKSWebsite

Data Talks is a series of talks between Brazil and Germany on the topic of usages of publictransparency and open government data to face the social challenges from our times.From September to December 2021, researchers, government officials and expertswill exchange their views and experiences on how… read more

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#5: Public data against corruption

Payment of bribes, illegal political campaign financing, cartel behavior, overbilling of public purchases or of construction works. Those are some corrupt activities that the public administration all over the world must protect themselves from.

The fight against corruption is something that unites countries all over the world. Even though the faces of corruption in Brazil and Germany might be different, similar challenges, of course to different degrees can be found in both countries. Just recently corruption cases associated with the COVID19 pandemic have affected both countries. In Germany and Brazil the purchasing of COVID-19 individual protection equipment and the roles of various politicians in the buying process of overpriced masks was discussed all over the media. This shows a bigger problem: while politicians may have a facilitating role in the purchasing process and are allowed to have additional income, if they publish it, this can also be tempting to get a piece of the cut. Transparency of the whole process is key and highlights one of the main elements in the fight against corruption. In the case of Germany, the discussion around the so-called mask deals had a massive impact on the recent elections in Germany.

Public opinion often flares up when we talk about corruption, mostly due to an unmoralistic component of the corruption act. The task of fighting corruption sounds too big for a single individual, and therefore many expect the rise of a saving power that will both clean public administration and avenge the people. Unfortunately, we don’t have heroes in real life. We need, however, to find realistic and sustainable ways to fight corruption, but also to measure the often unknown. With this in mind, public data is not only a way to hold governments accountable, but also an important tool to help public bodies, the press and civil society to investigate public activities and ascertain accusations against public administration. Information, data and transparency are an important strategy in order to fight corruption.

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