NWU Business School creating index to measure SA's ability to fight corruption
The North-West University (NWU) Business School in Potchefstroom is setting up a specialist unit that will focus on the impact of corruption and commercial crime.
It plans to create an index to measure the ability of South Africa and other countries to fight these scourges.
The School's director, Professor Jan van Romburg, wants to launch the index later this year.
Bruce Whitfield interviews the forensic accountant on The Money Show.
The [NWU] Business School wants to distinguish itself in some areas, and one of those is definitely the fight against corruption and the awareness pertaining to corruption.Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
Corruption is a difficult animal to describe... We want to put out an index that describes the propensity to fight corruption. There is a need for that.Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
How exactly can this be measured?
Prof. Romburg lists some of the key signifiers that would indicate the extent of corruption and action taken against it.
One of those aspects is, for instance, media. If you look at a country, is your media free? We already know in South Africa the tremendous role that media plays.Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
If one starts looking at the transparency from your financial reporting and what gets acted on. In South Africa we have our Auditor-General and the reports, but what happens with those reports subsequently?Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
If one looks at public procurement, how effective and how transparent are those processes?Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
The effectiveness and independence of law enforcement is another area to be taken into account.
As is a country's legislation around whistleblowing.
This index is still a work in progress, but that's where we want to end... If we look on a year-on-year basis, do we improve or do we decline? How do we compare to other countries?Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
It is something that measures the fighting capability [of a country], rather than state the obvious that corruption is prevalent.Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
Romburg notes that the index would not have to rely solely on its contributors doing their own surveys as reports by various institutions are available.
He says he's not "totally negative" about the extent of corruption in South Africa, because efforts underway are helping raise the public's awareness of the problem.
The awareness that is being created by the Zondo Commission, and the transparency from that, is enormous.Prof. Jan van Romburg, Director - North-West University Business School
Find out more about the NWU Business School's plans on The Money Show:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : NWU Business School creating index to measure SA's ability to fight corruption
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