Episode #5
Public data against corruption
Payment of bribes, illegal political campaign financing, cartel behavior, overbilling of public purchases or of construction works. Those are some corrupt activities that the public administration all over the world must protect themselves from.

The fight against corruption is something that unites countries all over the world. Even though the faces of corruption in Brazil and Germany might be different, similar challenges, of course to different degrees can be found in both countries. Just recently corruption cases associated with the COVID19 pandemic have affected both countries. In Germany and Brazil the purchasing of COVID-19 individual protection equipment and the roles of various politicians in the buying process of overpriced masks was discussed all over the media. This shows a bigger problem: while politicians may have a facilitating role in the purchasing process and are allowed to have additional income, if they publish it, this can also be tempting to get a piece of the cut. Transparency of the whole process is key and highlights one of the main elements in the fight against corruption. In the case of Germany, the discussion around the so-called mask deals had a massive impact on the recent elections in Germany.

Public opinion often flares up when we talk about corruption, mostly due to an unmoralistic component of the corruption act. The task of fighting corruption sounds too big for a single individual, and therefore many expect the rise of a saving power that will both clean public administration and avenge the people. Unfortunately, we don’t have heroes in real life. We need, however, to find realistic and sustainable ways to fight corruption, but also to measure the often unknown. With this in mind, public data is not only a way to hold governments accountable, but also an important tool to help public bodies, the press and civil society to investigate public activities and ascertain accusations against public administration. Information, data and transparency are an important strategy in order to fight corruption.

Guests
M.A. Juliana Sakai
Chief Operating Officer at Brazilian anti-corruption NGO Transparência Brasil
Juliana holds a bachelor degree in international relations from the University of São Paulo and a master's degree in political science from the Leuphana Universität, in Lüneburg, Germany.

In the last nine years, Juliana has worked in the field of corruption fighting, leading projects on public transparency, social participation and accountability. She also represents Transparencia Brasil as a civil society member in government and multilateral forums at international, national and subnational level, such as the transparency councils of the Brazilian Office of the Comptroller General, Brazilian Senate and São Paulo’s State government.

Personal Website
Dr. Bianca Vaz Mondo

Public Policy and Anti-corruption specialist

Dr. Bianca Vaz Mondo holds a PhD in Governance from the Hertie School in Berlin. She has previously contributed to research activities in the EU-funded Project ANTICORRP at ERCAS, together with Prof. Dr. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi.

Her research interests include evidence-based anti-corruption approaches and the relationship between democratic accountability institutions and corruption. Besides her academic experience, she has worked in a number of government monitoring projects also with NGO Transparência Brasil where she was recently elected to the Board of Directors.


Personal Website
Moderators
M.Sc. Mara Mendes
Phd Candidate in Political Science on the field of big data in health, health sector efficiency and transparency
Mara Mendes holds a Bachelor's degree in Social Sciences and Media Studies at the University of Siegen, a Master's Degree in Media, Communication, and Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She is now a Ph.D. Candidate in Political Science at the University of Münster, working on Open Data in the Health sector.

Mara has a background in working, campaigning, and researching transparency, open data, open government, and public procurement. She is an expert in assessing the presence and quality of public data in different areas of public administration, having participated in relevant studies on the subject. Organizations she has worked for include the Open Knowledge Foundation Germany, Transparency International, and various universities.

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