This paper aims to investigate the factors affecting local government officials’ susceptibility to corrupt behavior among Indonesian local government officials.
This study uses a self-report survey and collected 449 questionnaires from 65 village government districts in Central Java province, Indonesia. This study uses a simple and partial correlation to measure the relationship between the susceptibility to corrupt behavior and the independent variables. Binary logistic regression was used to investigate which independent variables were best to explain the local government officials’ susceptibility to corrupt behavior.
The results show that the factors that best explain corrupt behavior’s susceptibility are the officials’ moral conviction to refrain from corrupt behavior, the perceived opportunity of corruption and the perceived benefit of engaging in such behavior. Further, this study finds an appealing crossover interaction between the perceived cost and social norms on corrupt behavior, such that when officials perceive the cost of engaging in corrupt behavior as low, they will rely more on social norms to decide whether to commit corrupt behavior.
This study provides actionable information for policy formulation. In particular, this study indicates that improvement of internal control can deter corrupt behavior. In addition, the findings of this study also suggest that changing the way we convey the message about corruption might be a promising intervention to mitigate corrupt behavior among government officials. More specifically, a more persuasive-positive-tone message that emphasizes the benefit of not engaging in corrupt behavior or that most people are against corruption can deter corrupt behavior.
The present study provides empirical evidence on the determinants of local government officials’ corrupt behavior from Indonesia’s perspective, which is currently limited.
The authors thank Editor and anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments and suggestions. The authors also gratefully acknowledge the cooperation and tremendous help from district officials, village heads, and youth communities across Central Java province, Indonesia, where they distribute the questionnaires. Pretisila Kartika Putri acknowledges financial support from the Institute of Research and Community Research, Universitas Jenderal Soedirman.
Srirejeki, K. and Putri, P.K. (2022), "Local government officials’ susceptibility to corrupt behavior: some Indonesian evidence", Journal of Financial Crime, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFC-06-2022-0132
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