Women and corruption in the water sector: theories and experiences from Johannesburg and Bogotá

Corruption exists in many forms and the motivations behind an individual pursuing or accepting illicit conduct may be as diverse as the types of corruption. It is imperative to better understand the underlying aspects of corrupt behaviour and their implications in order to achieve several interlinked targets under the Sustainable Development Goals and to generally improve ‘good’ governance through more transparent, accountable and effective institutions and procedures. Among those are the gendered roles and special responsibilities that are associated with women in many societies, which make them subject to diverse forms of corruption to obtain water for the household’s needs. This report draws on a literature review into the dynamics of, and rationales for, corruption, including the theories of the Principal–Agent Model, the Fraud Triangle, Need or Greed and institutionalized corruption. The empirical section of the report builds on a survey administered among a group of water professionals and eight focus group interviews on the theme, conducted in Johannesburg and Bogotá.