Inter-Institutional Trust and Multi-Agency Networks in Anti-Corruption Efforts in Public Administration in Kenya


  • Gedion Onyango


This article specifically strives to explicate broader interests and a rather growing phenomenon in the public sector management, namely, the role of inter-institutional trust in enhancing multi-agency approaches to implementation of cross-cutting policy programs. The main objective is to explore the correlation between variables of trust and the integration of anti-corruption efforts in governmental organizations. It is argued that ethics and ethical decision-making processes are matters of bureaucratic-personalities, which, innately commands trust in and between relevant institutions, the personnel, and among stakeholders to be effected. Thus, the paper explores the extent to which implementation processes appended on multi-agency approaches could be a function of administrational trust in public administration with relevance to anti-corruption strategies. Drawing on a qualitative study of the subnational public administration in Kenya, administrational trust was mapped from the general referents of trust—reliability, confidence, integrity, transparency, performance, etc.—to discern efforts of mainstreaming anti-corruption initiatives in governmental institutions. It was found that challenges, mainly low personnel commitment and organizational responsibility on integrity, dysfunctionalities of institutional capacities, and organizational communication that are ofttimes critical to institutionalization and coordination of anti-corruption strategies correlated to problems of trust with multi-agency networks for anti-corruption reforms in Kenya. In fact, non-performance, lack of personal integrity, organizational enclaves, and inter-institutional hostilities characteristic in the implementation processes in public administration were indicative of administrational trust deficits.