International gender conference: Incorruptible Women? Gender Dimension of Corruption
On 23 Februray 2016 was held an international conference: Incorruptible Woman? Gender Dimensions of Corruption, which highlighted a possible context between corruption and gender.
International gender conference: Incorruptible Women? Gender Dimension of Corruption | source: TI
In addition to the lawyer of Transparency International Martina Mikulášková, which presented the results of an analysis of judgments in corruption offenses, the conference also attended Lucie Žáčková from the STEM/MARK agency. She interpreted the results of sociological survey of corruption perceptions among the Czech public – both analyzes are included in brochures The Incorruptible Women? The Gender Dimension of Corruption. Furthermore, it also appeared Romana Volejníčková from the Institute of Sociology of the Academy of Science of the Czech Republic with a contribution pointing to the consequences of the different perception of social roles of men and women in the public sphere. Researches in the context of gender representation in decision-making positions added Jana Smiggels Kavková, the director of the organization Forum 50 %. She summarized the progress of legislative measures aimed at balanced representation of men and women in the public sector.
Norway – a country traditionally contains top spots of the CPI – represented Gro Skaaren-Fystro, a representative of the Norwegian branch of Transparency International. And what approach to the topic of corruption and gender prevails among the Member States joining GRECO (Group of States Against Corruption), whose member is the Czech Republic since 2002, added the rapporteur of gender equality Vita Habjan Barborič from Slovenia.
Tolerance of men and women to corruption
„Even though the presented survey results of corruption crimes carried out by Transparency International didn´t aprove direct correlation between gender and the level of corruption, some indicators support the hypothesis of women who are less corruptible than men,“ says Martina Mikolášková, the co-author of the Analysis of the judgments in corruption offenses. Even from the contribution of the Norwegian representative of Transparency International Gro Skaaren-Fystro showed that tolerance of corruption and gender isn´t primarily related. Therefore, even if there were more women represented in decision-making, it is likely that the women involved in corruption to the same extent as men. On the other hand, the research of the Norwegian Anti-Corruption organization U4 confirms the assumption of lower tolerance towards corrupt behavior of women (especially true for democratic systems) and to be associated with gender and some differences in committing corruption crimes. In a set of recommendations, among other things, it was said that the collection and comparison of gender-sensitive data is in terms of national and international environment very important.
Video Incorruptible Women? Gender Dimension of Corruption | source: TI
About the purpose of analyzing and collecting gender-sensitive information and about the need for an active approach of Member States in obtaining them also spoke Vita Habjan Barborič, deputy of the GRECO. This idea meets one of the main objectives of the project Incorruptible women which was contributing to discussions of gender specific and verifiable data and through them either refute or confirm a pre-defined assumptions. Systematically evaluated and practice-based information complete anti-corruption tools used so far effectively. Vita Habjan-Barborič went in his reflections further than analyzing the relative levels of corruption and gender – opened, for example, the topic of the difference in the impact of corruption on men and women and also presented experiences from Slovenia, where the problem with the low representation of women in decision-making positions was effectively solved by the introduction of quotas.
In the performance of Jana Smiggels Kavková, which concluded the entire conference, sounded themes accentuate the emphasis on transparency in tendering procedures, the possibility of using the same tools to get a job, promotion of gender diverse work groups and also the introduction of quotas.
Looking to the future
Transparency International – Czech Republic wasn´t concerned with the issue of corruption and gender up to now. High participation of representatives of gender organizations at the conference and professional public response to the results of the project confirmed that the topic is current, relevant and meaningful. „It turned out that the influence of gender on corruption should not be underestimated. It should also take into account in the preparation of anti-corruption strategies. Furthermore, it is necessary to point out the fact that the under-representation of women in decision-making posts constitutes a loss for society as a whole, because the balanced participation of women and men in decision-making positions is essential for democracy,” says Martina Mikolášková. And therefore gender aspects of the corruption represent issue, which Transparency International wants to pursue and to develop new opportunities for cooperation.
It turned out that the influence of gender on corruption should not be underestimated. It should also take into account in the preparation of anti-corruption strategies. Furthermore, it is necessary to point out the fact that the under-representation of women in decision-making posts constitutes a loss for society as a whole, because the balanced participation of women and men in decision-making positions is essential for democracy.