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Accountability in reconstruction

International experience and the case of Ukraine

Experience from the last two decades suggests anti-corruption efforts in reconstruction do not have a good track record. Ukraine’s reconstruction challenge includes establishing multi-faceted anti-corruption initiatives as part of an agenda of democratic renewal and economic progression.

5 July 2022
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Accountability in reconstruction


The publication is supported by the EU Anti-Corruption Initiative (EUACI) – the leading anti-corruption support program in Ukraine funded by the EU, co-funded and implemented by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

The views expressed by the project do not necessarily represent official views of the EUACI, the European Union, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

Main points

  • Systemic and transnational corruption, as well as policy and implementation capture, are elements of the likely corruption risks
  • Anti-corruption in reconstruction matters for trust, efficiency, and broader state resilience
  • Principles of political sensitivity, local empowerment, and mutual accountability should underpin recovery efforts
  • Tackling transnational corruption, maintaining awareness of gender issues, instituting effective procurement and boosting state capacity are possible immediate interventions in designing reconstruction programmes
  • The sustained empowerment of a broad array of actors – from local community groups to business associations – is necessary to support lasting institutional change

Cite this publication

Jackson, D.; Lough, J.; (2022) Accountability in reconstruction. Bergen: U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute (U4 Report 2022:1)

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About the authors

Dr. David Jackson leads U4’s thematic work on informal contexts of corruption. His research explores how an understanding of social norms, patron-client politics, and nonstate actors can lead to anti-corruption interventions that are better suited to context. He is the author of various book chapters and journal articles on governance issues and holds degrees from Oxford University, the Hertie School of Governance, and the Freie Universität Berlin.

John Lough

John Lough is an associate fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House. He began his career as an analyst at the Soviet Studies
(later Conflict Studies) Research Centre, focusing on Soviet/Russian security policy. He spent six years with NATO, and was the first Alliance representative to be based in Moscow (1995–98). He gained direct experience of the Russian oil and gas industry at TNK-BP as a manager in the company’s international affairs team (2003–08). From 2008 to 2016, he ran the Russia & CIS practice at BGR Gabara, a public affairs and strategy consulting company. Alongside his work with Chatham House, John is a consultant with Highgate, a strategic advisory firm.


All views in this text are the author(s)’, and may differ from the U4 partner agencies’ policies.

This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)