Measuring corruption in Europe and the USA: Toward an integrated approach?

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


    This chapter summarizes public perceptions and expert evaluations concerning elected officials' levels of corruption, focusing on comparisons between the United States and 29 European Union "plus" (EU+) countries (28 EU Member States in 2018 plus Switzerland). While surveys of corruption have become more widely available in recent years, there is still a lack of comparable data focusing on specific government institutions, rather than general perceptions of corruption by elected or public officials. Thus, this study takes advantage of four major sources of citizens' perceptions of corruption to develop an average score and ranking for a total of 30 countries: the 2017 Global Corruption Barometer, the 2017 Euro barometer subtitled "Integration of Immigrants in the European Union and Corruption, " the 2016 International Social Survey Program's (ISSP) Module on the "Role of Government V, " and the Pew Research Center's 2018 "Global Attitudes & Trends Survey. " Three expert assessments of levels of corruption supplement these surveys: the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) Project's measure of legislative corruption, Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2016, and the World Bank's 2016 Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) assessment of the "Control of Corruption. " Finally, the chapter tests several hypotheses derived from the literature using the various corruption measures as the dependent variable and finds that choosing a measure of corruption based on citizens' perceptions or expert evaluations is substantively important. Thus, one must exercise caution when selecting one type of measure over the other.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationScandal and Corruption in Congress
    PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd.
    Number of pages20
    ISBN (Electronic)9781801171199
    ISBN (Print)9781801171205
    StatePublished - Nov 7 2022


    • Comparative data
    • Corruption
    • Expert surveys
    • Legislative corruption
    • Measuring corruption
    • Public corruption
    • Transparency international


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