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The Asia Foundation Releases USAID-Funded Survey on Perceptions and Knowledge of Corruption (SPEAK)

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, December 4, 2013 — The Independent Authority Against Corruption (IAAC), The Asia Foundation, The Sant Maral Foundation, and Mercy Corps Mongolia (MCM) released the Survey on Perceptions and Knowledge of Corruption (SPEAK) report as part of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded Strengthening Transparency and Governance in Mongolia (STAGE) project. The project aims to strengthen democratic governance by building a more transparent and accountable regulatory and legislative environment while promoting principles of checks and balances.

Implemented in September 2013, the survey provides important nationwide data on perceptions of corruption at the household level. This report reflects the third round of the survey conducted under the STAGE project. A total of four SPEAK surveys are to be implemented through the end of the project in March 2014.

During the public launch of the SPEAK survey, Richard Chen, acting USAID Representative to Mongolia noted: “USAID hopes the survey findings will provide important data and perspectives for policy deliberations in Mongolia related to transparency and good governance.”

By providing information on long-term trends in every day corruption and new information on citizen views on grand corruption, the Foundation believes that the surveys will trigger invigorated and critical dialogues on issues of transparency, accountability, and corruption in Mongolia. Designed to capture long-term, nationwide data on perceptions of corruption, the SPEAK survey builds on the semi-annual corruption benchmarking survey conducted under the USAID funded Mongolian Anti-corruption Support (MACS) project, implemented from 2006 – 2011 by the Foundation.

The Foundation has been disseminating the survey findings in partnership with the IAAC and the MCM’s USAID-funded Active Partnerships and Public Engagement for Accountable Localities (APPEAL) project.

Scope SPEAK survey

  • Surveyed 1,360 households in 7 districts in Ulaanbaatar and 21 soums in 6 aimags in September 2013;
  • A total of 11 surveys were conducted before SPEAK, which allowed for data comparison over time.
  • Presents nationwide data on perceptions of corruption and actual incidences of corruption at the household level;
  • Expanded to include questions on grand corruption and administrative practices;
  • Face-to-face random interviews conducted.

Findings SPEAK survey

  • Corruption continued to be the third most important problem in the country, but its relative significance among respondents is decreasing.
  • Respondents are significantly more optimistic about the progress in fighting corruption in the last three years, and are more hopeful about the state of corruption in the future.
  • Expectations of fair treatment in health, education and government administration have worsened since the second survey in March 2013.
  • Land utilization, local procurement tenders and mining continued to be perceived as the most corrupt sectors.
  • The respondents’ perception that there is a strong correlation between “politics” and “grand corruption” is growing, which supports yet another finding: that political

Read more about The Asia Foundation and its work in Mongolia.

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