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Combating corruption in Cambodia

Sophal Ear (Department of Diplomacy & World Affairs, Occidental College, Los Angeles, California, USA)

Asian Education and Development Studies

ISSN: 2046-3162

Article publication date: 11 April 2016




The purpose of this paper is to provide a critical analysis and survey of Cambodia’s recent efforts to combat corruption. It explores the policy context, perceived extent of corruption, causes of corruption, anti-corruption measures, evaluates those anti-corruption measures, and provides policy recommendations.


This paper reviews the literature on corruption and anti-corruption efforts in Cambodia. It relies on available data from the World Bank and Transparency International, and compares these data over time.


The paper shows that corruption in Cambodia is pervasive and that anti-corruption efforts are limited because of a lack of political will. Existing anti-corruption measures designed with loopholes must be amended, but implementation remains the primary challenge.


This paper contributes to the limited literature on combating corruption in Cambodia.



The author thanks Chimchanbo Uk, Maj Jason Hansberger of the US Air Force, and Vanarath Hem of Brandeis University. The author is particularly grateful to Maj Hansberger for proofreading and extensively commenting on a previous version and for Hem for her valuable contributions to the policy recommendations, anticorruption measures, and evaluation sections. The referees ' comments were much appreciated in improving the current draft. Most of all, the author is grateful for Professor Jon Quah ' s efforts in shepherding through the editing process from start to finish, which was nothing short of heroic.


Ear, S. (2016), "Combating corruption in Cambodia", Asian Education and Development Studies, Vol. 5 No. 2, pp. 159-174.



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Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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