By Alice Brennan
Michael Hershman is a co-founder of Transparency International, the Berlin-based organization that promotes responsible and transparent government, and releases an annual Corruption Perception Index. The index is used as shorthand for the depth of corruption or transparency in 178 nations, with Singapore and the Nordic countries typically ranking as the most transparent, and Somalia and Afghanistan as the most corrupt.
It also releases an international Bribe Payers Index, ranking countries by the likelihood of their business sector to pay bribes.
Hershman, now CEO of the Fairfax Group, a private consulting firm, believes that corruption represents a violation of human rights, as it robs citizens of their dignity and their due. “Yet,” he notes, “we’ve never seen a human rights trial based on corruption.”