04 Feb

Low level corruption in the Caucasus

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While corruption is without a doubt a major issue in the Caucasus, many think about higher level corruption rather than day-to-day corruption.

This is an analysis of the 2011 Caucasus Barometer. All differences are statistically significant. Although these questions were asked with a great deal of privacy, there is certainly a social desirability effect here.

People are asked if avoiding paying a fare on public transit was “ever justified” (scale 1 = can never be justified, 10 = can always be justified) and although this is a fairly low stakes behavior, people in the Caucasus were fairly (pun intended) against it.

And what about taxes? There are reported issues with people paying taxes at all levels. But again, people in the Caucasus were not keen on this.


And everyone’s favorite – bribes!

No one in the Caucasus could justify accepting a bribe or present.


As far as giving bribes, few could justify it.


And when asked if they have given a bribe, NO GEORGIANS had given one! Wow. 6% of Armenians and 29% of Azerbaijanis though. This is interesting given the past two charts.


Overall, I’m not sure if justification of corruption has any implication on actual behaviors of corruption. It might not be justifiable to pay a bribe, but you do it anyway.

I think that it is telling that Georgians are the least tolerant of all of these types of low level corruption activities.

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