A Collective Action Approach against Corruption The Case of the Dominican Republic
For almost a century, the Dominican Republic has faced considerable governance and corruption challenges. High levels of corruption were present long time ago, and still prevail today, even if their characteristics and manifestations have changed. Rule of law has been weak for a long time, and generally government effectiveness has not been high. By contrast, the country has performed better in terms of progress on fundamental political and civil liberties, and thus relatively speaking it rates satisfactorily in terms of voice and accountability. Civil society faces an enabling environment within which they can operate. Against such background, the innovative and participatory IPAC initiative to improve governance and combat corruption is assessed, taking a relatively broad governance perspective. The paper does not attempt to provide an exhaustive evaluation of all aspects of the single initiative, but its aim is to contribute to the analysis and debate about the benefits and challenges of participatory initiatives promoting good governance and anti-corruption, in the Dominican Republic and elsewhere, while also concretely identifying possible follow-up initiatives. The first section of this paper provides in brief some of the general antecedents on the evolution of governance corruption in the Dominican Republic. The second section discusses the IPAC strategy. The third and fourth sections present the authors’ views on IPAC’s achievements and shortcomings, respectively. The concluding section provides some follow-up recommendations.