Corruption and violence

corruptionCorruption is one of the greatest obstructions to the development of a country, for sustainability and for certification. The responsible organization does not participate in any type of corruption and takes preventive measures where it may expect corruption, if necessary by doing no business in a country or region at all. Corruption by nature tries to be invisible and therefore is hardly measurable. Nevertheless the Oiconomy Standard introduces a certain level of measurability by reversal of burden of proof and the level of management control. Indications for presence of corruption are (not exclusively) the following conditions:

  1. Not 100% of the value of the sum of purchase of a product or sales reaches the supplier, an intermediate or another justified party.
  2. Payment for services which principally are free of charge.
  3. Slowing down or speeding up of processes, raising or descending on waiting lists, changes in priorities, outrunning of punishments.
  4. Execution of work is regularly delayed and getting more expensive without proper and transparent reasons.
  5. Payment to journalists for “independent” services.
  6. Cartel formation or agreements on price between competitors.
  7. Dumping practices.
  8. Making use of poverty or any other social conditions for a competitive advantage.
  9. The financial administration of the organization is not in good order or demonstrates a large percentage of payments without bills or demonstrates a poorly defined item.
  10. The prospects for a delivery, income, service, function or favour depend on payments or favours and differ from the usual price valid for everybody.
  11. Contracts in the public sector are regularly granted to one or few suppliers where the field of competition is much larger.
  12. People with influence on the decisions of granting contracts have close relations to those getting contracts.
  13. The rules within the organization or in the area where the organization is operating are not equal for all (groups of) people.
  14. People in power, public officials, auditors or samplers use the rules for own benefit e.g. to become richer or to get preference treatment.
  15. People in power or their family or tribe possess or spend essentially more than would be possible based on their income or previously obtained possessions.
  16. Terror or blackmail is used to influence decisions.
  17. Sums or services are paid to local or national public officers, the juridical power, political parties or for election funds.
  18. Extremely high differences in remuneration within the organization.

In areas with a large governmental corruption or violence accompanied extortion, the organization usually has little own influence on corruption. However the Oiconomy Standard adheres the opinion that pressure by this standard can eventually persuade authorities to act against corruption.

Corruption is hard to measure concretely. Therefore, the Oiconomy Standard measures the quality of the anti corruption management system.
The preventive costs are under investigation. These logically should be the costs of a perfect anti corruption management system or the typical gains of corruption.

Violence.

Products and companies may directly or indirectly be responsible or co-responsible for situations of violence. A company may directly be involved in the production or trade of weapons or be politically involved in the violent protection or gaining of locations rich in mineral resources. The company may be involved in drugs, pornography or other businesses where criminal influence and interests are prominent.
A company may also indirectly be involved with violence or run the risk of causing future violence. e.g. the company may deplete fresh water or other natural resources the local population depends on; the company may get involved in local struggles for power or discrimination; the company may willingly or unwillingly be involved in financing violence. As a matter of fact it is very hard to prevent such financing only being present in a country of violence or purchasing produce of such country. For example unwillingly by the simple purchase of cocoa beans, the cocoa industry without any doubt has financed the weapons the civil war in Ivory Coast has been fought with and the oil industry undoubtedly financed many wars.

The responsible organization can demonstrate that it does not share responsibility for potential future violence for instance by depletion of water in water poor areas, diverting of rivers, depletion of agricultural soil, publishing of discriminating documents or discriminating in its own personnel policy, trading in weapons or drugs, white laundering of money, teaching violence to children.

Because direct causes of violence are very hard to measure, the Oiconomy Standard measures the quality of the anti violence management system. The costs of a perfect anti management system in a violence sensitive location and business will be the preventive costs and the unsustainability score, expressed in ESCU’s.

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