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Security & Strategic Review - September 2018 (ISSN 1741-4202)

Corruption is sometimes envisaged as a static pyramid: a wide base of operators – bribe takers and payers – at the bottom, with a group of ringleaders siphoning off profits and controlling the entire process at the top. While this may be true, it is also useful to see corruption from an alternative perspective as a more dynamic phenomenon, closely linked to the ebb and flow of the political cycle. Guatemala’s case shows that illicit campaign finance is often the starting point; the multi-country Odebrecht corruption scandal supports a similar conclusion.

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