Systems view of fighting corruption - IPaidABribe as a successful model for the future
Corruption in general and corruption in India in particular in our view requires a systemic solution. Such a systemic solution needs to address certain specific root causes and needs to serve as a catalyst that creates a virtuous ecosystem. The proposed interventions seek to bring together diverse stakeholders on common platforms, they focus sharply on both actionable insights and public disclosure/transparency of data, they use tools that are amenable to massive scaling (i.e. mobile and web apps), they seek to create models, implement pilots with those models and then scale those models through policy measures and finally they place heavy emphasis on creating positivity in the ecosystem through civic learning which in turn will positively influence behaviours at a massive scale and in future generations.
IpaidABribe.com is perhaps one of the most innovative examples of crowdsourcing as it uses the collective inputs of citizens. Crowdsourcing has been adopted as a strategy to build up huge databases, but not so far for assessing the quality of government services. The more hits we get, the greater the influence of the site on governance and policy. As of today, the net is still a minor influence on the government. The reason is that because of the hierarchical government personnel system, higher jobs are occupied by middle aged people who are not net savvy. This will not sustain for long. As younger people, who are more conversant with the net interact in larger numbers with the government, they will demand services over the net, as also report and give their feedback on the government over it. Both politicians and officials cannot ignore the influence the net will have on democracy in the coming years. Ipaidabribe.com might just be the trendsetter for more crowdsourcing initiatives on governance.
- Dheeman Ghosh, Senior Associate, IPaidABribe