Setting a Good Example? The Effect of Leader and Peer Behavior on Corruption among Indonesian Senior Civil Servants: The Effect of Leader and Peer Behavior on Corruption among Indonesian Senior Civil Servants

Mala Sondang Silitonga*, Maria van Duijn, Liesbet Heyse, Rafael Wittek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Standard anticorruption interventions consist of intensified monitoring and sanctioning. Rooted in principal‐agent theory, these interventions are based on the assumption that corrupt acts follow a rational cost‐benefit calculation by gain‐seeking individuals. Given their mixed results, however, these interventions require closer scrutiny. Building on goal‐framing theory, the authors argue that rule compliance requires a salient normative goal frame, since monitoring can never be perfect. Being inherently brittle, it needs constant reinforcement through external cues operating alongside formal monitoring and sanctioning. Leaders and peers setting a good example can provide such cues. In line with this hypothesis, analysis of multilevel repeated measures data from a vignette study of 580 Indonesian senior civil servants shows that the perceived likelihood of a hypothetical civil servant accepting a bribe is lowest when monitoring and sanctioning are strong and when leaders and peers are known to have refused bribes in the past.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-579
Number of pages15
JournalPublic Administration Review
Volume79
Issue number4
Early online date27-Jun-2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug-2019

Keywords

  • ETHICAL LEADERSHIP
  • PERSPECTIVE
  • ENFORCEMENT
  • COMMITMENT
  • BUSINESS
  • VIGNETTE
  • OUTCOMES
  • TRUST
  • NORMS

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