ASTHANA, A.N., 2004. Corruption and decentralisation: evidence from India's water sector. IN: Godfrey, S. (ed). People-centred approaches to water and environmental sanitation: Proceedings of the 30th WEDC International Conference, Vientiane, Laos, 25-29 October 2004, pp. 181-186.
This paper presents empirical findings regarding the relationship between decentralisation of provision of water supply and
corruption in provision of services. The current policy advice from the international agencies of aiming for decentralisation
as an end in itself is questioned. The conventional wisdom that decentralisation is likely to induce participation and reduce
corruption is also disputed. Drawing on a large data base, interaction between various actors is analysed. In developing
countries corruption takes many forms depending on the actors and the nature of transaction. Types and magnitude of
corrupt behaviour are analysed and shortcomings of the current strategies to combat corruption are discussed. We find
that corruption in water supply agencies run by local governments is significantly higher than in the agencies run by the
state government. This applies to almost all types of corruption. The reasons for this situation are discussed. Measures to
combat corruption in decentralised water supply agencies are suggested.