To read this content please select one of the options below:

Fighting African corruption when existing corruption-control levels matter in a dynamic cultural setting

Asongu Simplice (Research Department, African Governance and Development Institute, Yaoundé, Cameroon)

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Article publication date: 7 October 2014




The purpose of this paper is to assess the determinants of corruption-control (CC) with freedom dynamics (economic, political, press and trade), government quality (GQ) and a plethora of socio-economic factors in 46 African countries using updated data.


A quantile regression approach is employed while controlling for the unobserved heterogeneity. Principal component analysis is also used to reduce the dimensions of highly correlated variables.


With the legal origin fundamental characteristic, the following findings have been established. First, while political freedom increases CC in a bottom quantile of English common-law countries, there is no such evidence in their French civil-law counterparts. Second, GQ consistently improves CC across all quantiles in English common-law countries but fails to exert the same effect in middle quantiles of French civil-law countries. Third, economic freedom ameliorates CC only in common-law countries with low existing CC levels (bottom quantiles). Fourth, The authors find no significant evidence of a positive “press freedom”-CC nexus and having the status of low-income English common-law (French civil law) countries decreases (increases) CC. From a religious domination scenario, the authors also find the following. First, political and trade freedoms only reduce CC in Christian-dominated countries while press freedom has a mitigation effect in both religious cultures (though more consistent across quantiles of Christian-oriented countries). Second, GQ is more pro-CC in Christian than in Muslim-dominated countries. Third, while economic freedom has a scanty negative nexus with CC in Christian-oriented countries, the effect is positive in their Muslim-dominated counterparts. Fourth, having a low-income status in countries with Christian common-law tradition improves CC.


The authors complement the literature on the fight against corruption in Africa by employing recently documented additional factors that should be considered in corruption studies.



JEL Classifications — C10, H10, K10, O10, O55

The author is highly indebted to the editor and referee for their constructive comments.


Simplice, A. (2014), "Fighting African corruption when existing corruption-control levels matter in a dynamic cultural setting", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 41 No. 10, pp. 906-922.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles