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

Ulaanbaatar, June 13, 2014 — The Asia Foundation, the Sant Maral Foundation, and  Mercy Corps Mongolia (MCM) released the fourth Survey on Perceptions and Knowledge of Corruption (SPEAK) under 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.

Conducted in March 2014, the survey presents important nationwide perceptions of corruption at the household level. 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.

SPEAK 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.

Survey methodology and scope

  • Surveyed 1,360 households in seven districts in Ulaanbaatar and 21 soums in six aimags in March 2014;
  • Conducted a total of 12 surveys thus far, allowing for data comparison over time;
  • Presents nationwide data on perceptions of corruption and actual incidences of corruption at the household level.
  • Face-to-face random interviews conducted.

Survey findings

  • As in the three earlier surveys, corruption was named the third most critical problem in the country; over 8 percent of respondents believed corruption to be the most important problem in the country.
  • In March 2014, “corruption in law enforcement bodies” was the most commonly cited obstacle to the fight against corruption. In earlier surveys, “the habit of solving problems through corrupt practices” was the most commonly cited obstacle.
  • Land utilization, local procurement tenders, and mining continued to be considered the three most corrupt agencies or sectors. Political parties fell from the top five.
  • The public’s expectation of fair treatment from law enforcement and the judiciary was significantly low. Respondents, in general, are not satisfied with the actions against corruption, but long-term observation since 2006 shows perceptions have improved.
  • The incidence of reported cases of corruption significantly decreased.
  • Men were consistently found to be more aware of public affairs, while women were found to be more concerned with household or private affairs.
  • Urban respondents had stronger opinions on corruption than rural respondents.

Read more about the Foundation and its work in Mongolia.

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