Bribery Defined A bribe is “something given or taken with an intention to influence the conduct or judgement of the person receiving it. A bribe is used to specifically obtain something to which one does not have a right” (bribe, n.d.). Bribery is “the act or practice of giving or accepting a bribe” (bribery, 2015). A globally accepted practice of giving gifts to potential clients to possibly secure their business is not considered bribery (bribe, n.d.). However, paying money or giving lavish gifts to receive a favorable building inspection report, or have unsafe products approved as safe by health regulators, or to have government contracts secured at inflated prices (Wrage, 2017), are considered bribery. Bribery – A Common Practice Brows furrow when a politician is on a very exclusive golfing vacation and then takes a meeting with business executives or foreign heads of state behind closed doors. The secrecy of those meetings leads to questions and speculations that run news cycles for days if not weeks. As the world gets smaller, due to globalization, bribery and corruption are more difficult to investigate or control (Tomasic, 2018, p. 18). Bribery, to get things done, is more common than the general population might realize. Studies have shown that misconduct in firms is most prevalent where there are declining profits, firms in depressed industries, and firms where their competitive position is being threatened (Burnham, Jeon, & Zeng, 2018, p. 247). There is also data to
DB 1 REPLIES 6 suggest that firms with good performance are just as prone to if not more so to engage in unethical behavior (Burnham, Jeon, & Zeng, 2018, p. 247). The Organization for Economic Co- operation and Development (OECD) reports that between 1999 and 2014 more than 400 cases world wide involving companies or individuals involved in bribing foreign public officials (OECD.org, 2014). This level of corruption is alarming especially considering the United States’ election process and the dark money contributors’ names and amounts of their contributions that are not reported to the Federal Election Commission (Lawrence & Weber, 2017, p. 168). The dark money contributions only lead to speculation of corruption and quid pro quo agreements. Bribery – Where it is Found The aforementioned OECD reports over 400 cases worldwide of corruption between business, individuals, and governments. Alarming as this may seem, bribery is most common in third- world countries where low wages (worldatlas.com, 2019) and living standards are well below U.S. standards. The U.S. entrepreneur perspective is that bribes are expected in many countries (Allen, 2000). This dilemma does not seem to have a remedy given that third-world countries and their leaders do not subscribe to common ethical business practices and the Western culture and the businesses therein continue to pander to them for their resources or cheap labor.
- Summer '14