Conquering Corruption: An Evaluation of the European Union's Efforts in Ukraine


  • Callie Burklew University of Florida



undergraduate research, corruption, civil society


Even after the Revolution of 2014, reducing the level of corruption within Ukraine has remained a challenging goal. Ukraine’s border conflict makes adequately addressing the roots of its corruption without unduly undermining state capacity especially challenging. Despite this delicate situation, the establishment of a stable, lawful, and democratic Ukraine is of vital importance to the European Union given its geopolitical significance. Certain arguments in the literature provide a possible solution to both reducing levels of corruption by expanding civil society and thus improving levels of generalized social trust and social accountability. Accordingly, this paper explores the extent and effect of the EU’s support for civil society and anti-corruption efforts in Ukraine.  It also examines any counterproductive results from this assistance, such as fueling public cynicism and distrust. With the limited data available, the preliminary findings of this paper suggest that while the factors influencing corruption are complex and interrelated, civil society and anti-corruption efforts may increase aid effectiveness. For more conclusive findings in the future, it will be necessary for more comprehensive and consistent data collection by the European Union and civil society organizations in Ukraine.


Metrics Loading ...


Andersson, S., & Heywood, P. M. (2006). Anti-corruption as a risk to democracy: on the unintended consequences of international anti-corruption campaigns. In L. Sousa, P. Larmour, and B. Hindess. (Eds.), Governments, NGOs and Anti-Corruption (pp. 33-50). Retrieved From: https://www.taylorfrancis


Bhargava, V., Cutler, K., Ritchie, D. (2011). Stimulating the Demand for Good Governance. Retrieved from the Partnership for Transparency website:

European External Action Service. (2019). EU-Ukraine relations, factsheet. Retrieved from https://eeas.,%20factsheet

International Aid Transparency Initiative. IATI Datastore CSV Query Builder. Retrieved from

International Cooperation and Development. Aid Transparency. Retrieved from

Kiev International Institute of Sociology (2015). Corruption in Ukraine. Retrieved from https: //

Kiev International Institute of Sociology. Keiv Archive

National Bank of Sociological Data. Retrieved From

Kunicová, J. (2006). Democratic institutions and corruption: incentives and constraints in politics. In S. Rose-Ackerman (Ed.), International Handbook on the Economics of Corruption (pp. 140-160). Retrieved From


Letki, N, & Evans, G. (2005, July). Endogenizing Social Trust: Democratization in East-Central Europe. British Journal of Political Science, 35, 515-529. doi: 10.1017/S000712340500027X

Lough, J., & Dubrovskiy, V. (2018). Are Ukraine’s Anti-corruption Reforms Working? Retrieved from publications on Chatham House website:


Marín, J. M. (2016, January). Evidence of citizen engagement impact in promoting good governance and anti-corruption efforts. Retrieved from U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Center website:

Mungiu-Pippidi, A. (2013, January). Controlling Corruption Through Collective Action. Journal of Democracy, 24, 101-115. Retrieved from

Schmidt, D. (2007). Anti-Corruption: What Do We Know? Research on Preventing Corruption in the Post-communist World. Political Studies Review, 5, 202-232. doi: 10.1111/j.1478-9299.2007.00129.x

Transparency International. Corruption Perceptions Index. Retrieved from

UK Department for International Development (DFID) (2015, January). Why corruption matters: understanding causes effects and how to address them (Evidence paper on corruption). Retrieved from


Ukrainian Society Scientific Journal. Archive. Retrieved From

US Agency of International Development. CSO Sustainability Index Methodology. Retrieved From

Wolczuk, K., & Žeruolis, D. (2018, August). Rebuilding Ukraine: An Assessment of EU Assistance. Retrieved from publications on Chatham House website:


World Bank Group. Worldwide Governance Indicators. Retrieved from

Zapata, M. (2018, August). Collective Action Theory Applied to Anti-Corruption Practice: A Bolivian Case Study (Research Paper Series No. 07). Retrieved from International Anti-Corruption Academy website:






Social & Behavioral Sciences, Business, Education