In introducing the special issue, this essay draws together international experiences by way of examples that have appeared in the Public Administration and Development journal over recent decades. What has worked in global anti-corruption? What has not? And is there a need for a more holistic approach to global anti-corruption in terms of integrity management, given that the nature of public sector corruption is changing and boundaries between public and private sectors have become politically blurred?
Against the background of key concepts, what have been the trends and issues of corruption and integrity in the public/civil services and honest government at national and international levels? The range of approaches and strategies are outlined, followed by selected national cases across the regions. Second, the essay assesses the major institutional approaches and their shortcomings and presents elements of an alternative approach on the basis of civic education and the nurturing of reflexivity. Citizens are central to this thinking in terms of sensitising them to public ethics. (Re)orienting public officials towards becoming reflective public officials, that is, why they are public officials and who is the public, could not be more pertinent to recent revolutionary events in much of the Arab world. The debate continues. Recent developments such as political corruption and corruption at the sectoral (e.g. water and education), decentralised, local government and city levels are discussed. Although we cannot switch entirely to personal values, the technical solutions by themselves have not proved as successful as their proponents had hoped, and other approaches are essential to replace and/or complement them.1
Finally, the focus of the special issue is outlined, with its stress on providing perspectives that not only add to the discourse on global anti-corruption but provide practitioners with policy-relevant guidance. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.