Top25 Corruption Risks in Higher Education
Top25 Corruption Risks in Higher Education

From June 2021 to February 2022, the Association of Legal Clinics of Ukraine had been implementing the project “Anti-corruption compliance in higher educational institutions: from identifying risks to overcoming them.” One of the directions of the project was the search and creation of a catalog of the most typical corruption risks in higher education.

For this purpose, the research group of the project:

  • analyzed open sources (registers (judicial registers, NACP registers, Prozorro systems, etc.), information from mass media, social networks, previous national and foreign research on corruption risks in higher education);
  • conducted a national survey of students of higher education institutions from all over Ukraine;
  • carried out in-depth monitoring and assessment of corruption risks in five pilot institutions of higher education according to the adapted Methodology developed by the National Agency for the Prevention of Corruption.

Corruption risks are defined both in the context of the legislation that directly regulates the issue of committing corruption and corruption-related offenses (the Law of Ukraine “On Prevention of Corruption”, relevant articles of the Code of Criminal Procedure, Code of Administrative Offenses of Ukraine), as well as additional norms that determine the rules of access to public information, implementation of public procurement, violations of election legislation, crimes against health and sexual freedom – in particular, sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is considered in this study as a complex problem that has signs of corruption risk, where intimate services or other types of harassment become the “currency” in the educational process. In the world, this phenomenon was also called “sextortion”.

Based on the results of the analysis, it was possible to form an expanded register, which includes 55 corruption risks in four main areas of higher education organization: educational process, scientific activity, administrative activity and partnership of higher education institutions with external partners (stakeholders).

Based on the expanded register, experts created a list of 25 corruption risks, which are the most typical for the modern system of higher education in Ukraine. For each risk, its context and manifestations, factors contributing to the emergence of the risk, potential strategic and corruption consequences of its occurrence, as well as examples of its implementation are described.

At the end of the study, recommendations to universities, the National Agency for the Corruption Prevention, and the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine regarding minimizing corruption risks in higher education are given, grouped by risk categories. The appendix provides examples of best practices for preventing or overcoming corruption risks, which the project team investigated during monitoring in five pilot universities.

Download TOP-25 Corruption Risks in Higher Education

The publication was made possible with the support of the American people and is part of the implementation of the project “Anti-corruption compliance in higher educational institutions: from identifying risks to overcoming them”, which is implemented by the NGO “Association of Legal Clinics of Ukraine” with the financial and expert support of the USAID’s Support to Anti-Corruption Champion Institutions Program, as well as expert and advisory support of the National Agency for the Corruption Prevention .

Top25 Corruption Risks in Higher Education