making local government more ethical

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Robert Wechsler
Lawrence Lessig, who heads the Safra Center and hosted the event, started by defining institutional corruption as:
A situation where influences within an economy of influence tend to weaken the effectiveness of an institution, especially by weakening public trust of the institution.
This is an academic definition. What's important to take from it is (1) the fact that institutional corruption is a situation rather than an act (and it is hard to deal with IC situations...
Robert Wechsler
On Saturday, I attended a one-day conference on Institutional Corruption sponsored by the Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University (videos of it will eventually appear here). Although local government was scarcely mentioned (there was one image of a painting that portrayed the 1930s machine in Kansas City, MO), many ideas that were discussed are applicable to local government ethics.


At the annual Council on Governmental Ethics conference in Washington D.C.

From left:

  • Kurt Nemes, World Bank Ethics Office
  • Carla Miller, City Ethics
  • Matt Cross, Office of Governmental Ethics

Each presented as a part of an ethics training seminar in Washington DC, Dec. 2010


City Ethics' Carla Miller attended an international conference on public administration to present a paper on public corruption entitled "Ethics, Elephants and Enigmas" Shown here with panelists that Ms. Miller moderated on day 1 - October 23. The panel was themed: "Management Issues" with panel members from Bucharest, Romania, Bejing (2) and Shenyang, China.

Robert Wechsler
The International City/County Management Association (the city, county, and town manager professional organization) is holding a 90-minute audioconference on local government ethics on January 29. I do not know the details of the program, and I am not endorsing it, but it sounds like a very inexpensive way for local government managers and employees to share a professional presentation on local government ethics...
  • What safeguards can be put in place to protect the innocent ??
  • Disgruntled employees making false ethical allegations as retaliation to employer...


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