3. A strategic approach towards supporting integrity in the Peruvian regions

The challenges at regional level outlined in Chapter 2 call for the development of a strategic approach that supports the promotion of public integrity in the regional governments. Such a strategic approach should take into consideration the regional reality and in particular the available capacities and the prevailing integrity risks. As such, regional governments could focus on a number of key integrity-related priorities to generate greater impact. In addition, the integrity function within regional government could leverage the role of the Regional Anticorruption Commission and support their work. Finally, various actors at the national level can directly or indirectly contribute to promoting an environment conducive to public integrity in the regions. In particular, the SIP has a key role in directly supporting regional efforts on public integrity while ensuring a close co-ordination and coherence with the contribution of other relevant actors such as the CAN and PCM.

All public entities have a legal obligation to implement the integrity function (see the “The implementation of the integrity model and function in the regions” sub-section in Chapter 2). However, Peru’s regional governments would benefit from an incremental approach that aims at a gradual implementation and develops along a number of local priorities and risks. This should also take into account the challenges of both contingent and structural nature encountered by regional governments.

If the integrity model were to be implemented at the same time and to the full extent in all regions, it would most likely merely exist on paper in many regions without fulfiling its mandate or generating impact due to limits in regional government capacities and resources. In turn, this could create cynicism among public officials and the public in general, questioning the commitment of integrity reforms and undermining the support for ongoing and future reforms. As mentioned, currently only five Regional Governments (Amazonas, Cajamarca, La Libertad, Lambayeque, Piura) have established an integrity function so far (Annex A); and only one has a proven track of past activities and a planned strategy.

While both the National Plan and Resolution of the SIP No. 1-2019-PCM/SIP already provide for a range of options to institutionalise the integrity function, the reality at the regional level requires even more tailored – and flexible – guidance for the function´s design and implementation. As discussed in the “Challenges to implementing the Integrity Model (Modelo de Integridad) in the regions” sub-section in Chapter 2, several challenges encountered by regional governments justify such a differentiated approach. This should also include guidance provided at the national level.

Such a differentiated approach could take account of the gap between regional and central level institutions in terms of size, which may also serve as a proxy for the level of institutional capacities, available resources and support needed. At the same time, the approach should provide a range of options that are capable to tailor the integrity function to Peru’s diverse regional realities (economic but also political and geographical) as well as to the related exogenous or environmental integrity risk levels and typologies of each region. These two main dimensions, size and the level of corruption risks, are also referred to in the National Integrity Plan (Box 2.2) and Resolution No. 1-2019-PCM/SIP (Article 6.5.2). As such, an indicative matrix to guide the policies and implementation guidance by the SIP is proposed to categorise regions along these two dimensions (Table 3.1).

The detailed methodology to select the relevant criteria, identify reliable sources of information and develop indicators to operationalise and measure the two dimensions should be developed, steered and owned by the SIP in dialogue and agreement with the regions. The matrix could be adopted by the CAN to institutionalise and build legitimacy of the integrity function within the regions. In support of this process, the SIP could consider a number of criteria, some of which have been pointed out by representatives of regional governments during a validation workshop held in September 2020 (Table 3.2).

The institutional setup and the list of functions – among the ones defined in Resolution No. 1-2019-PCM/SIP – that could be considered as minimum requirements to implement the integrity function should be then based on the category assigned to a region by the matrix (Table 3.3). Each category would be thus the starting point to incrementally implement the full integrity function within the regional government, which – as a minimum – should focus on tasks related to the risk assessment, integrity policy and monitoring of the integrity model’s implementation. In addition, a number of priority areas of application, such as mining, health, education or infrastructure, for example, should be defined based on the assessment of local risks and weaknesses.

As for the institutional setup, although the establishment of an OII is the ideal arrangement to take the key role within regional government and the ultimate objective for any entity, it is considered that the alternatives provided by the legal framework could equally serve the purpose in contexts of very limited resources, which is a reality in many regions of Peru. Any alternative set up would require direct reporting to the Governor or the highest administrative authority (and the SIP).

Such an approach for Regional Governments aligns with the guidance and criteria established in Resolution No. 1-2019-PCM/SIP, bringing the function ever closer to regional realities and enabling the incremental implementation of the function with due consideration of the challenges previously identified and guided by the matrix (see the “Challenges to implementing the Integrity Model (Modelo de Integridad) in the regions” sub-section in Chapter 2 and Table 3.1).

In parallel to the establishment of the integrity model and to ensure setting the foundations for an integrity system in the regions, the regional governments – in co-ordination with the SIP – could identify priorities based on a diagnostic tool assessing the internal strengths and weaknesses and external opportunities and threats of the regional government (also known as SWOT-analysis). A key input for this diagnostic – but not the only one – would be the detailed integrity risk assessment carried out by the integrity function. Priorities could also be defined by taking into account the progress in the implementation of the Integrity Model measured by the Public Integrity Index, which is being developed by SIP and will represent the key input for the entity’s work plan or integrity programme. At the same time, they could be defined by considering those public services delivery areas – or even specific services and objectives thereof – which can be considered as most significant in improving living conditions, such as those contributing to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, and are most affected by corruption. Similarly, in order to create buy-in and support from stakeholders, the diagnostic could identify areas/sectors in which it is most likely to show tangible results or “quick wins” of strengthening integrity.

Building on the diagnostic, subnational governments – under the leadership of the integrity function’s responsible official or area – should identify the priorities for strengthening integrity, determine the entity or unit responsible for defining a plan to implement such priorities and develop indicators to monitor advances in that area. In this way, subnational governments could develop a comprehensive integrity strategy – while ensuring the availability of appropriate budget resources – which would examine on a regular basis the progress made to ensure that the limited resources and capacities are used in the most efficient manner.

Regarding the specific priority areas, experience has shown that subnational governments could benefit in particular from the implementation of an effective risk management and internal control system which in turn may help to strengthen the local public administration and to reduce the risk of abuse in any economic sector and in a number of areas, including discretionary spending, license and permit administration, and procurement. In fact, these priority areas - risk management and internal control - are also part of the Integrity Model.

Furthermore, the OECD Recommendation of the Council on Public Integrity underlines the need to set high standards of conduct for public officials. These clarify which behaviours are expected of public officials and provide a framework for governments to enable ethical behaviour. As emphasised by the OECD Recommendation, it is key to move from a reactive approach that is merely focusing on detecting and sanctioning corrupt individuals (which is necessary, of course), to a proactive approach that seeks to support, to bring together and to makes visible the large majority of public officials that are committed to doing a good job and serving the public interest with integrity.

As such, one of the priorities for regional governments could be to set out standards of conduct and values and clearly communicating the public values and standards to make these alive and part of the organisational culture. These efforts should build on previous experiences and guidance to develop and adopt a code of conduct at local level as described in the “The implementation of the integrity model and function in the regions” sub-section in Chapter 2 (Basel Institute on Governance, 2018[4]), and be led by the SIP with the support of SERVIR and ENAP, especially to mainstream them among senior officials. Other regional governments could follow these examples and develop in a participatory manner a code of conduct that sets out the standards for the public service.

The integrity function within the regional government could lead the participatory process of developing the code and support entities in implementing awareness-raising measures. Such an exercise of developing and implementing a code of conduct is also a good exercise to bring the topic of integrity to the table and can serve as an entry point for a wide variety of other measures and activities (Boehm, 2015[5]). For instance, as a second step, a code of conduct would need to be supported by further guidance, in particular regarding the identification and management of conflict of interest. Furthermore, the integrity function could co-ordinate with Human Resources to develop a specific integrity training in order to train local public officials in public ethics and managing conflicts of interest. Given the high rotation of staff observed at local levels, such trainings should be repeated regularly and be mandatory for all new employees and types of employment contracts. The current development of an Integrity Induction Module by the SIP in collaboration with the ENAP could be particularly helpful to support such efforts.

Taking into account the relevance senior management has on creating a culture of integrity, specific integrity measures could focus in particular on senior management. By setting the highest integrity standards for leadership, an example can be set which will positively influence the broader civil service. Furthermore, awareness-raising and communication efforts on integrity could focus on those areas which were identified as at-risk sectors or functions in the diagnostic.

As within entities at the national level, the integrity function is not – and should not be – in charge of the implementation of all aspects of the integrity policies in the regional government. In coherence with the tasks and priorities proposed above, it has the key role of articulating and supporting all relevant actors/units within the regional government in view of ensuring an effective implementation of the integrity model, thereby promoting a culture of integrity and strengthening trust of citizens. As a consequence, it cannot resolve the weaknesses of the other areas or units within the regional government.

This role of articulation can be particularly challenging, because of the nascent or absent status of the integrity function within Regional Governments. In addition, the structural limitations of the regional governments may also affect all relevant actors of the local integrity system. Indeed, the interviews highlighted structural weaknesses related to the budget, organisational arrangements and specialisation of staff. At the same, in one region that has not established the integrity function yet, it was lamented that the lack of such an articulation role resulted in poor knowledge of relevant initiatives or tools across the regional government that could support other actors’ integrity action without any additional investment.

Building on the analysis of the functions of these actors as well as on the role that the Institutional Integrity Offices could play in public entities at the central level, as analysed in a previous OECD study (OECD, 2019[3]), the integrity function in regional entities should articulate and contribute to the implementation of the various components of the integrity model by performing the roles as summarised in Figure 3.1.

  • Integrity Leadership: The integrity function shall have and exercise leadership on integrity within the entity, for instance by leading the entity’s strategy, monitoring the implementation of the integrity model (e.g. activities, initiatives, sanctions). This requires proactive collaboration from areas responsible for key administrative processes (and risks) such as procurement and budget issues as well as from those directly responsible for all specific elements of the integrity model, such as the Human Resource Office for training activities, the Technical Secretariat for the Disciplinary Administrative Process for disciplinary sanctions, and the Transparency Unit/Person for transparency-related activity. It is also essential that the head of the entity demonstrates support to ensure convening power.

  • Advice and support: the integrity function shall provide orientation and support to the Governor as well as the units in charge of integrity-related measures such as the Office of Institutional Control for risk identification and oversight of risk mapping, to the Human Resources Office for training activities and monitoring of disciplinary cases, or to the General Secretariat for co-ordinating the implementation of the code of ethics. This task is key for the coherent mainstreaming of all the components of the integrity model in the entity.

  • Co-ordination: within the complaints’ component of the integrity model, the integrity function may be given the role of receiving complaints. If so, the task of the integrity function would consist in transferring them to the relevant actors (e.g. Technical Secretariat for the Disciplinary Administrative Process; Attorney General Office; Office of Institutional Control) and ensure the follow-up, rather than processing them. As highlighted in (OECD, 2019[3]), the processing and investigation of complaints requires substantial resources and would go beyond the preventive role the integrity function is entrusted with in the entity. Co-ordination would also be relevant with the Offices of Institutional Control, dependent on the CGR and part of the external control function. Indeed, the OCI could verify the implementation of risk management by the regional governments, provide recommendations for improvements and ensure the exchange of information between internal and external control functions, e.g. with respect to integrity risks.

The Secretariat for Public Integrity (SIP) plays a key oversight and guidance role on the integrity functions in regional governments because these have to report to it technically and functionally as the leading entity of the National Policy. As part of this mandate defined in Resolution No. 1-2019-PCM/SIP, the SIP can adopt regulations and recommendations of mandatory nature for the integrity functions. In addition, the SIP has been providing assistance to Regional Governments on integrity matters, for example in the framework of the initiative “La Caravana de la Justicia: Acercando la Justicia a la Ciudadanía” promoted in 2019 by the Ministry of Justice (Box 3.1).

In addition to these efforts, the SIP could further leverage its mandate and strategic role within the CAN to support regions in implementing the integrity function in regional governments. This becomes particularly crucial considering the limited capacity and resources at regional level, but also the need for a strategy to better communicate, clarify and make coherent the understanding and role of public integrity beyond the strict compliance with the law.

Furthermore, the SIP’s institutional position within the PCM and the CAN can be further exploited to mobilise political commitment of Governors as well as to facilitate dialogue and co-ordination in those contexts, which could be further enhanced to promote integrity at the regional level (see the “Improved co-ordination at the national level” sub-section in Chapter 3).

For these purposes, the SIP could consider prioritising the following initiatives in both direct and indirect support to the integrity advisory function:

  • Mobilising high-level commitment by making the case for integrity: interviews during a fact-finding mission and results from a recent survey highlighted that the concept of integrity is often misunderstood and not fully grasped in its potential effects and benefit as a public management tool, both by public officials (Box 2.6) and the Governors. This condition hinders the necessary high-level support and commitment to implement the integrity function but also the integrity model as a whole. The SIP could thus take advantage of events such as the GORE meetings to illustrate the case for integrity, and explain the rationale, objectives and concrete actions to implement the National Policy, the integrity model and the institutionalisation of the integrity function. Such activity could be part of a broader strategy which includes more structured and targeted capacity-building activity recommended for Governors (see the “Raising awareness and building capacities of Governors” sub-section in Chapter 3).

  • Supporting and building capacities of staff working in the regions’ integrity function: regardless of the advancement of the integrity function implementation, interviews during the fact-finding mission and the broader regional context draw the attention to the need for all regions in Peru to create and sustain capacity of the staff working in the integrity function as well as to support them in their efforts. Initiatives in this regard should aim to empower the role of the integrity function within the Regional Government and the region as a whole, but also – and more crucially – to provide guidance, expertise and tools to embrace a priority-based approach to implement the integrity model. In particular, the SIP could promote and follow the process for regions to define the essential tasks to perform based on the matrix but also the corresponding priority components of the integrity model which are to be implemented based on an initial diagnostic. As for capacity building programmes, while those for general staff should be organised and managed at the regional level, eventually with the support of other national entities such as SERVIR, ENAP or the Secretariat for Decentralisation, the SIP could set up a train-the-trainer programme for the head of the integrity function that could be then autonomously replicated internally – possibly in collaboration with local universities and local representatives of association of municipalities – to ensure a minimum coherent set of skills and tasks that they should perform at regional level. These could be carried out in training events by a cluster of regions but also through supporting e-learning material and activities. This could be considered in the current design phase of the capacity-building programme aimed at the integrity function and all incoming public officials – through an Integrity Induction Module – developed by the SIP in collaboration with the ENAP. The SIP could evaluate in how far the integrity function could support the implementation of the integrity training with practical and tailored exercises in the entity.

  • Promoting dialogue between the integrity functions: Although contexts, including the mandates, for the integrity functions may differ from region to region, a mechanism, e.g. an intranet platform or yearly meetings, could help to ensure coherence, exchange of experiences, tools but also failed attempts which could eventually improve mutual learning and support in the design and implementation of the activities and plans. These mechanisms could also ensure the public recognition of those individuals or entities that championed the promotion of integrity through innovative ideas, as similarly done through the “Integrity Ambassadors” award celebrated during the Integrity Week organised by the SIP (CAN, n.d.[6]).

These activities could take advantage of the expertise built so far. In addition, the SIP already developed some tools and guidance which could be useful for the integrity function, such as the guiding document for developing regional anticorruption plans (CAN, 2015[7]). Furthermore, the SIP could promote synergies with other national initiatives targeting the regions as done for the “Caravan of Justice” (Box 3.1). The enhanced role in support of the regions by the SIP would also require additional resources both in terms of dedicated staff and capacity to convene capacity building or learning-exchange activities.

The limits and challenges that characterise the implementation of the integrity model in Peru’s regional governments also reverberate in the broader efforts to establish public integrity systems at regional level, which remains broadly unaccomplished (see the “Regional Anti-corruption Commissions” sub-section in Chapter 2).

As illustrated, Peru decided to create the Regional Anti-corruption Commissions (CRAs), acknowledging the importance of reaching the regions as part of its national policy. Similarly to the role of the CAN at national level, these commissions are meant to articulate initiatives, co-ordinate actions and propose policies to prevent and fight corruption among all relevant stakeholders from public and private sectors in co-ordination and coherence with the broader national efforts. In this way, the CRAs can ultimately ensure the implementation of the National Anti-corruption policy.

While the design of these regional co-ordination mechanisms is potentially capable to address regional issues and risks, the experience has so far demonstrated a limited advance and impact of the CRAs. In fact, not all regional governments have an active CRA or have appointed a Technical Secretariat. In addition, among those CRAs that are active, some have not adopted the internal regulation and many are still missing a plan (Table 2.2 above).

In the cases of those CRAs that have advanced on some elements of assigned functions, interviews suggest that this is mostly dependent on the personal commitment of the members and/or the technical secretary. While the initial outset to create these Commissions is laudable by bringing together the different actors responsible for integrity, reforms are needed to make the CRAs more effective and sustainable without only relying on the political will and support of the heads of the entities comprising the CRAs.

Among the main weaknesses are the lack of institutionalisation of these spaces; the low levels of participation by members, the limitations of the technical secretariats; and the lack of more co-ordinated work with the technical secretariat of the CAN, function now carried out by the SIP (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]). Interviews with experts and during the fact-finding mission confirmed this situation and highlighted how the key impediments for their success are mainly related to resources and capacity constraints to support the technical work, but also to a lack of focus on priorities and at-risk processes as well as the preponderance of local political dynamics and conflict among the members.

In order to ensure that the CRAs can play the role and have the impact they were set up to do, several elements would need to be reinforced and underlying weaknesses overcome.

First, analysing the outputs and activities of the CRAs, views from experts interviewed confirmed that the CRAs tend to focus on political and legal (enforcement-related) issues, overlooking to assess and address corruption risks and risk sectors throughout the activities and processes of the regional public administration such as the public procurement and budget cycles. To strengthen such a risk-based approach, CRAs could consider involving – either as invitees or permanent members – additional regional actors overseeing key processes and risks such as the decentralised offices of the OSCE or the Regional Development Agencies that are being created. Relevant insights on risks at the municipal level could also be considered by inviting local representatives of municipal associations such as AMPE (Asociacion De Municipalidades del Perú) and REMURPE (Red de Municipalidades Urbanas y Rurales del Perú). While the participation of additional actors in the CRAs may help bringing additional insights and understanding of such risks, existing members could already take a more risk-based approach to fulfil the envisaged role and tasks, starting with the elaboration of the Regional Anti-corruption Plan.

Second, to support the institutionalisation of the CRAs not only among the public institutions, but also among the population, the standardisation of the organisational structures and operation of the CRAs would be an important step. This would also facilitate the task of the SIP to support the CRAs and allow comparability. The SIP, mandated by the CAN, could develop a model for internal rules of procedures to be adopted which would also address some of the weaknesses currently found. For example, in Colombia the national government developed detailed guidelines for the Regional Moralisation Commissions which include a model for the internal rules of procedures which clearly sets out some of the key aspects, for example, the mission, objectives and functions of the Commission, roles of each member, time period for meetings and progress report. While the CAN has published guidelines for the creation of the CRAs that include key elements for the internal rules of procedure, these are rather vague. This has led to a situation, where, among other aspects, the period in which an ordinary or extraordinary meeting has to be called differs broadly from commission to commission. For example, in the CRA of Ica ordinary meetings have to be held every month, while in Paso no time period is foreseen. In line with the recommendation of the Office of the Ombudsperson, the CAN could consider establishing a reasonable time period in which ordinary meetings have to be held to ensure regularity in the activities of the CRAs, while maintaining a certain level of flexibility. In this way, meetings could also be easier to schedule at, for example, the beginning of the year to ensure availability. This could be included in the internal rules of procedure (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]).

Third, a factor at times undermining the operation of the CRAs is the commitment and availability of the heads of institutions represented in the CRAs. According to a survey of the Office of the Ombudsperson, in 35% of the CRAs the absence of members in meetings is the principal problem for active work and the cancellation of session because of a lack of quorum (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]). In line with the recommendation of the Office of the Ombudsperson, in order to facilitate the presence of all institutions at meetings, the internal rules of procedures could include the possibility to nominate an alternative representative. This representative should be of high rank and be given the power to vote in decisions of the CRA. Furthermore, absences without the nomination of a representative should be communicated to the public to build external accountability.

The effectiveness of the CRAs depends not only on the design of the commission and representation of its members in the meetings, but also on their proactive role of its members to contribute to it, provide necessary information, and implement measures and policies agreed within the CRAs. If this is not the case, the CRAs remain another formal body without having little or no impact on entities and, in turn, on citizens. Indeed, the OECD Recommendation of the Council on Public Integrity stresses the need to establish responsibilities at all levels not only for designing and leading the integrity system, but also for implementing its elements and policies, including at the organisational level (OECD, 2017[9]). In order to achieve that members of the CRAs actively contribute with proposals and suggestions and to support the implementation of decided initiatives, all members of the CRAs could nominate a technical contact point in their institutions. The contact point would not itself be responsible for any implementation, but rather ensure the continuous support and active participation of the institution in any activity or initiative related to the CRAs, prepare the discussions in the CRAs, provide all necessary information and follow up on commitments undertaken and follow up on any tasks as foreseen in the Regional Anti-corruption plan and report progress for the respective entity. In addition, contact points could create a network to exchange information. The internal rules of procedures could mandate each member of the CRAs to nominate a permanent contact point (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]).

Fourth, the technical secretary of the CRAs has the role to prepare the meetings of the CRAs, execute the agreements, as well as prepare studies and technical proposals. However, as analysed in the OECD Integrity Review of Peru (OECD, 2017[10]), the CRAs technical secretariats are often either inexistent or relatively weak. This was confirmed by a recent analysis of the Ombudsperson Office, in which it found that of the 25 commissions supervised, 17 had a technical secretary (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]). However, in many cases, they experienced difficulty in fulfiling their functions. These include part-time work, lack of budget to carry out these tasks, and lack of training and specific assistance to enable them to be more efficient in their work (Defensoria del Pueblo, 2018[8]). In many cases, the position of the regional secretary is filled by regional government officials who take on the task on a part-time basis. This affects the eminently technical nature of the secretariats and the need to have specialised personnel experienced in integrity and anti-corruption. As such, it is important to develop and encourage these technical units. Staff from the technical secretariat of the CRAs could receive specific training in Lima, and/or training could be offered at regional levels. Bringing CRAs staff together in Lima would additionally favour cross-regional learning. Also, the technical secretariats would benefit from developing clear internal rules and procedures. Furthermore, the lack of budget for the proper functioning of the technical secretariats has been identified as one of the most important problems facing the commissions in carrying out their activities. The internal rules of procedure of the CRAs could require each member of the CRAs to commit a certain budget to the technical secretary to guarantee operations and build their capacities (OECD, 2017[10]).

Lastly, the support and guidance of the SIP is vital to ensure accountability to the national level and ensure harmonisation throughout the 25 CRAs and with the national level. Since 2017, the SIP actively supports the CRAs through on-site visits and ad-hoc advice. However, to strengthen these efforts, the SIP could implement a virtual platform that allows the exchange and generation of information, both with the SIP and among the CRA. As suggested in the OECD Integrity Review of Peru and here, this could provide opportunities for cross-regional learning and policy making in specific areas, for example to improve the design and implementation of regional anti-corruption plans (OECD, 2017[10]).

Similarly to the proposed approach for the implementation process of the integrity model within regional governments, it is recommended to follow a priority-based incremental approach focused on the essential functions that CRAs are entrusted to perform according to the guidance of the CAN, namely:

  • Elaboration of the Regional Anti-corruption Plan.

  • To follow up and monitor the implementation and compliance with the National Plan for the Fight against Corruption.

  • To report biannually to the CAN on the progress made in the implementation of the Regional Plan for the Fight against Corruption.

  • To propose short-, medium- and long-term policies at the regional level for the prevention and fight against corruption (CAN, 2016[11]).

Directive N° 001-2019-PCM/SIP assigns the integrity function the role of the technical secretariat of any commission or other body responsible for integrity and fight against corruption. Furthermore, the guidance provided by the CAN to create CRAs entrusts the Regional Government to provide technical and logistical support needed by the selected entity for the effective performance of its functions (CAN, 2016[11]). In addition to the legal arguments, additional ones can be made to assign the integrity function the role of the technical secretariat of the CRAs:

  • The entity in charge of the integrity function in the national government as a whole, which is also the leading entity of the integrity policy at the central level, i.e. the SIP, also performs the role of the technical secretariat for the CAN. This helps to develop a coherent and comprehensive integrity system in Peru.

  • The integrity function, which is the only or one of the few bodies with clear mandate to institutionalise integrity at the regional level, could contribute to the same process within the CRAs. Such institutionalisation would be particularly needed to face the reality that very few CRAs have a full-time dedicated Technical Secretariat (Table 2.2), but also to develop regional integrity systems beyond political dynamics. The latter element is always a reality in all countries and very much so in Peru’s regions, and they should not be seen as an impediment, but rather as a strategic factor to be governed through a mature institutional environment consisting of resilient and stable structures (OECD, 2017[10]).

  • Further analysing the information on the status of CRAs’ implementation, the two regions where the integrity function, through an OII, also perform the technical secretariat of the CRAs, are both among the ones who adopted the internal regulation and regional plan.

In any case, the Regional Governments – through their integrity function – could support the technical secretariat as envisaged by the CAN to: 1) increase their impact; 2) avoid duplication of efforts; and 3) ensure coherence with the National Policy.

In particular, the integrity function could draw on the integrity-related skills, tools and methodologies developed within the regional government and share relevant insights on administrative processes and activities to prioritise the following work of the CRA:

  • Based on the risk assessment activity carried out within the GORE, identifying the risk areas and sectors in regions with the input of all other stakeholders, which is the first essential step to develop the regional anticorruption plan and the elaboration of any initiative to be undertaken. Considering the information collected during the fact-finding mission but also the formal mandate and function of the CRAs, risk should be the key guidance criteria of the CRAs’ action rather than specific cases under judicial scrutiny.

  • Based on these assessments, focus gradually on planned activities, policies and initiatives starting to address issues and sectors emerging as most at risk, leveraging existing work from any of the CRA’s members and aiming to produce intermediate results that could be presented to the wider public as evidence of the progress.

  • Setting up a reporting system to monitor activities and initiatives related to the National Plan on an annual basis.

  • Serve as the transmission belt between the Regional Government, the CRA and the CAN to share good practices, reports on progress but also to request support or ad-hoc assistance that may be needed in terms of knowledge, technical assistance, and political support (Figure 3.2). This role would also provide the opportunity to increase the voice and the active participation of regional governments in national policy making, which has been observed as a key co-ordination challenge in the whole region of Latin America and the Caribbean (OECD, 2019[12]).

As this role should mostly leverage tasks that the integrity function is already carrying out as part of its work within the entity, this should not create a substantial burden in terms of workload and additional needs. However, the CAN/SIP could consider supporting this role with uniform guidance, material and advice within the broader oversight role over CRAs.

As highlighted before, interviews during the fact-finding mission pointed out a low level of awareness among Governors about the essence and relevance of public integrity, as well as its potential as a public management tool. This situation also affects the implementation of the integrity model, whose component no. 1 is ‘commitment of senior leadership’, and the related required support of Governors to the integrity function in terms of legitimacy, visibility and resources.

In this sense, the SIP could support the mobilisation of high-level commitment by illustrating and making the case for integrity during events such as the Executive GORE. Similarly, the PCM – through the SD and SIP, and the support of the ANGR – could promote the organisation of an annual Integrity GORE (GORE Integridad) along the model of Digital GORE (GORE Digital), whose first meeting took place in October 2019 in Cajamarca with a session dedicated to integrity.

In addition to these efforts, it is also recommended to provide ad-hoc training to Governors (and possibly the closest advisors) through an induction training at the beginning of the term on public integrity to illustrate the legal elements to be complied with by regional governments, but also – and most importantly – to shape a simple coherent message on the links between integrity and key functions, responsibilities and priorities of the Regional Governments, including on how the entity can benefit from establishing a regional integrity system, and how this can be built progressively based on the capacity, resources and risks of the entity. Such a module could be included in future induction training programmes similar to the ones offered by the Secretariat of Decentralisation for elected mayors in 2018, which are planned to be replicated and eventually institutionalised (Box 3.2).

In this context, Peru could also consider the mandatory training programme organised for elected Governors and Mayors in Colombia to promote the co-ordination of the government plans of the incoming local administrations with the National Government and the National Development Plan. This programme is also supported by a Virtual Advisory Space –EVA (Espacio Virtual de Asesoría), where public servants, including Governors and Mayors, can request information and receive guidance on the different policies promoted by the entity.

Lastly, efforts should continue in monitoring the ethical climate among public officials at the regional level as recently done by SERVIR since the evolution of the results over time provides a valuable indication of high-level commitment together with a broader understanding of gaps and challenges in establishing a culture of integrity in regional entities, including the perception that senior managers do not abide by the conflict of interest policy (Box 2.6).

Considering Peru’s decentralised administrative model and the resulting influence of several national actors on regional governments and their integrity systems), nationally co-ordinated mechanisms can provide additional complementary support to the integrity function and ecosystem at the regional level. In doing so, these mechanisms could ensure avoiding gaps and overlaps between initiatives of different actors, thereby guaranteeing greater efficiency and impact.

The High-level Commission against Corruption (Comisión Alto-nivel de Anti-corrupción, CAN) is Peru’s anticorruption co-ordination mechanism that was established by Law no. 29976 and its regulation in decree no. 089-2013-PCM, which also outlines CAN’s mandate and responsibilities. The CAN is formed by public and private institutions and civil society, and co-ordinates efforts and actions on anti-corruption cross institutions and levels of government. It includes, among members, the president of the National Assembly of Regional Governments, and its responsibilities include supporting the implementation of the CRAs, and co-ordinating with them the implementation of the National Policy and Plan.

In order to improve the fulfilment of such responsibilities towards regions, the CAN could consider a number of priorities which draw from the assessment of the OECD Integrity Review of Peru (OECD, 2017[10]) and the challenges identified in the “Strenghtening the Regional Anti-corruption Commissions” section in Chapter 3. In implementing these initiatives, given the pivotal role envisaged for the integrity function in the broader regional perspective, but also SIP’s role within the CAN, they should be coherently and complementarily developed with SIP’s support activity to regions’ integrity functions. These are:

  • The CAN could strengthen the capacities of the technical secretariats of the CRAs through a focused capacity development strategy. Staff from the technical secretariat of the CRAs could receive specific training in Lima, with additional sessions to be organised at macro-regional levels to address local challenges. These activities should focus on operational aspects of the CRA’s functioning, including risk assessment, prioritisation, planning, and internal procedures. Depending on the area or aspect to be addressed, these activities would be co-ordinated by the SIP with input from various members of the CAN depending on the topic or area.

  • To ensure coherence and knowledge transfer between the national and the regional levels, an effective co-ordination mechanism leveraging IT tools and platforms between the CAN and the CRAs could be institutionalised. As previously illustrated, the integrity function could play a greater role as the integrity transmission belt between the national and regional levels, including within the CAN (see “Strengthening the Regional Anti-corruption Commissions” sub-section in Chapter 3). On top of this, the CAN could further develop IT initiatives such as the web-based platform to submit information on progress or public integrity indicators to enable public monitoring and benchmarking which are being developed but have not yet been implemented.

  • A mechanism could help to ensure information and experience sharing between regions in order to improve mutual learning – especially among regions with similar economic context – on risks, achievements and priority issues, e.g. starting with the design and implementation of the regional anti-corruption plans. On the one hand, this could be part of the intranet platform being implemented by the CAN; on the other hand, dedicated sessions for mutual learning could be included in the capacity-building events proposed above. Content-wise, these mechanisms should focus on common priorities and challenges but also trans-regional issues that can only be tackled through enhanced co-operation. Similarly to the proposal made for integrity functions, in order to incentivise the active participation of CRAs, this mechanism could also provide rewards in the form of public recognition or awards to “champion CRAs” bringing success stories and model that could be replicated in other regional context.

The Presidency of the Council of Ministers (PCM), the government’s main centre-of-government institution reporting to the head of government and serving the head of government and Cabinet, could also promote co-ordination efforts in support of regional integrity systems. As illustrated, many of the most relevant actors of Peru’s public integrity system – starting with SIP, but also SERVIR and SGP – are part of the PCM. Furthermore, the PCM also includes the Secretariat for Decentralisation, whose mission is to ensure a coherent and consistent decentralisation process. As such, it is essential that all these authorities (entes rectores) co-ordinate to ensure that the guidance and directives issued in their respective policy domains are coherent, do not create overlapping or duplicating efforts, and do not send mixed messages.

Given that PCM is also in charge of co-ordinating multi-sectoral policies and programmes within the executive, it could also play a role in promoting co-ordination between actors with direct influence on integrity policies and those leading entities in key risk integrity areas such as public procurement . In particular, it could propose the establishment of an inter-ministerial working group focused on developing tools and methodologies to support the identification and mitigation of integrity risks in procurement processes at regional level, which experts consider not been sufficiently addressed in regional integrity strategies (e.g. in the context of the CAN). Such group could include representatives from the Ministry of Finance (OSCE and Peru Compra) together with PCM’s entities such as the SIP and Secretariat for Decentralisation. Indeed, inter-ministerial working groups can be created in Peru for setting courses of action that will contribute to the proper implementation of multi-sector public policies (OECD, 2016[13]). At the same time, the group could build on the OSCE’s recent report on ‘Assessment and Strategy for Risk-management in Public Procurement’ (‘Diagnóstico y Estrategia para la Gestión de Riesgos en Contratación Pública’), which identifies 81 risks affecting the efficiency, competition as well as the integrity of the public procurement cycle (Organismo Supervisor de las Contrataciones del Estado, OSCE, 2020[14]).

A key initiative co-ordinated by the PCM that could both support and benefit from regional integrity systems are the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs). RDA’s are mechanisms for the cross-sector and intergovernmental co-ordination of a territory’s specific priorities, involving public and private actors (i.e. all levels of government, private enterprise, academia, and civil society).

The establishment of the RDAs is a major opportunity to support goals promoted by the decentralisation process and thus to bring benefits to citizens and the country as a whole. However, it also entails various integrity risks linked to the fact that the RDAs will be responsible for deciding priorities and channelling considerable amounts of public funds. On the one hand, the RDAs’ central role in regional decision making and administrative processes will enable them to oversee the management of regional resources and thus to oversee and understand risk areas and activities, so they could provide useful insights to the CRAs, especially in their risk mapping and assessment activities. Depending on the RDAs’ legal status and composition, CRAs could even consider inviting them to meetings or to have them joining as members. On the other hand, it is essential that RDAs have adequate mechanisms and processes in place to avoid undue influence (policy capture).

For example, the on-going process to establish priorities and areas for RDAs requires technical input in the form of studies and consultancies that will have great weight in the assessment. However, interviews during the fact-finding mission highlighted that in some cases the people or entities capable of providing these services at the regional level are limited in numbers and often linked to – if not financed by – those participating in the commissions that are entrusted to make decisions concerning the RDA’s planning. These dynamics require designing and establishing RDAs with necessary integrity safeguards that could naturally leverage the regional integrity infrastructure and policies, and are in line with the OECD strategy to preventing policy capture and promoting integrity in public decision making (Figure 3.3).

For this purpose, the need for support from the PCM is twofold:

  • First, to mainstream integrity in the RDAs by entrusting the integrity function of the Regional Government to provide them with advice in articulating and co-ordinating relevant integrity initiatives. Therefore, the PCM could mobilise relevant actors at both national and regional level – including Governors – to support and promote the added-value of establishing an integrity function in Regional Governments as well as to discuss and define the most appropriate role and responsibilities within the RDAs.

  • Second, to define minimum internal integrity policies addressing the inherent risks of capture of the RDAs, e.g. a conflict-of-interest disclosure policy for those making key decisions.

Given that the implementation of the RDAs is taking place in sequence across regions, this twofold intervention could be first piloted in a few regions where the level of maturity of the RDAs is more advanced and where advice on integrity would be thus most needed.

The temporary Inter-ministerial Working Group was created in 2019 with a 4-month mandate to improve organisational and human resources management in regional governments. In this way, the Working Group responded to the challenges experienced by subnational entities – also corroborated during the fact-finding mission – to establish organisational structures that respond to their necessities and capacities, as well as in implementing regulation and updating management tools.

The Working Group adopted an action plan envisaging the development of a total of nine documents, tools and programmes to standardise, guide and build capacity on organisational management and human resources in subnational entities. In addition, the working group engaged bilaterally with some regional entities, for example by supporting the regional government of Ucayali in the update of its Organisational and Functions Regulation (Reglamento de Organización y Funciones, ROF).

This Working Group addressed key structural challenges of Peru’s regions; however, integrity was not among the key dimension being considered. In the future, it would be beneficial for similar working groups to include the SIP and consider integrity as a cross-cutting value and tool for public management and co-ordinate with other national initiatives to build on existing efforts and amplify the impact of its work.

An additional way to promote and create incentives for implementing integrity systems at the regional level is to monitor and benchmark their “integrity” performance through indices related to issues such as the implementation of the integrity function (for the government) and the CRA (for the regions as a whole).

Although strictu-sensu indices are measurement tools, the ways that integrity-related indices are conceived are relevant for the definition of minimum standards or elements that are expected to be present in the integrity systems of public institutions, including subnational governments. They also introduce a competitive factor and offer possibilities of visibility for both achievement and failure. Some of these indices are made by national governments or control institutions (Korea, Colombia, Spain or Austria) or by civil society organisations (TI-Colombia, or the European Transparency Index for Cities developed by TI-Slovakia), or both. While the impact of these indexes is not unequivocal, there are indications that those indices create a “pull-factor” for local governments who want to claim credit for reform, or at least make it visible.

For this to be effective, monitoring should be carried out in a public and transparent manner, for instance through scorecards or indices. Both the SIP (for regional governments) and the CAN (for CRAs) could consider a similar approach as a means of communicating progress to citizens more easily, and applying political and social pressure to implement reforms.

One of the value-added of the CAN and CRAs’ model is that it brings together several institutions from the public and private sectors and civil society to promote co-ordination and improve the integrity system across the country. However, interviews during fact-finding mission showed that societal actors are relatively unaware of the efforts and initiatives being taken to implement local integrity systems at regional level.

This factor also hinders the full potential of public integrity, which is not just an issue for the public sector: individuals, civil society and companies shape interactions in society and their actions can harm or foster integrity in their communities. This is also asserted by the OECD Recommendation of the Council on Public Integrity that promotes a whole-of-society approach to integrity: since all these actors interact with public officials and play a critical role in setting the public agenda and influencing public decisions, they also have a responsibility to promote public integrity. Awareness-raising efforts, education and consultation mechanisms are three essential features to communicate standards externally that Peruvian institutions could consider putting in place at both central and regional level to target local groups of individuals, civil society and companies. In this sense, an initiative was organised by the SIP in 2019 - the Integrity Week (Semana de la Integridad) - which offered various typologies of open events (e.g. panels, presentations, awarding ceremony, hackathons, movies, etc.). Some of these were organised outside of Lima. These events aimed to reflect on the effects of corruption and how citizens and other stakeholders can contribute to raising the standards of public integrity through active participation and mutual recognition (Presidencia del Consejo de Ministros, PCM, n.d.[17]). Based on the results of these events, the SIP could develop a communication strategy to reach citizens at all levels of government. This strategy could foresee different communication channels and events, involve key stakeholders from the government, private sector and civil society, and be part of a longer-term strategy to strengthen integrity.

At the same time, CRAs – in close collaboration with local universities and active actors from civil society – could promote on-line training courses on the social benefits of issues related to public integrity such as the culture of legality and civic responsibilities (Box 3.5). Any stakeholder having a relationship or interaction with the public sector could even be encouraged to enroll and take part in this e-learning course by offering incentives for completion, such as issuing a certificate identifying them as “Citizen for Integrity” or “Business for Integrity” (OECD, 2018[18]).


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[5] Boehm, F. (2015), “Códigos de comportamiento para la administración pública”, Revista Digital de Derecho Administrativo, Vol. 14, pp. 65-89.

[11] CAN (2016), Lineamientos para la creación de Comisiones Regionales Anticorrupción, Comisión de Alto Nivel Anticorrupción, https://can.pcm.gob.pe/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Lineamientos-creaci%c3%b3n-de-Comisiones-Regionales-Anticorrupci%c3%b3n.pdf.

[7] CAN (2015), Guía para la formulación de planes regionales anticorrupción pasos y cronograma, Comisión de Alto Nivel Anticorrupción, https://can.pcm.gob.pe/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/GUIA-PARA-LA-FORMULACION-DE-PLANES-REGIONALES-ANTICORRUPCION.pdf.

[6] CAN (n.d.), Concurso Nacional Embajadores de la Integridad 2019, Comisión de Alto Nivel Anticorrupción, https://can.pcm.gob.pe/embajadores2019/ (accessed on 28 May 2020).

[8] Defensoria del Pueblo (2018), “Comisiones Regionales Anticorrupción: Diagnóstico y recomendaciones para mejorar su funcionamiento”, Boletín: Supervisión de Espacios Anticorrupción, Diciembre 2018 - Año I - №2, https://www.defensoria.gob.pe/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/BOLETIN-ANTICURRUPCION.pdf (accessed on 12 June 2020).

[2] Instituto Nacional de Estadística e Informática (2020), Perú: Percepción ciudadana sobre gobernabilidad, democracia y confianza en las instituciones, http://m.inei.gob.pe/media/MenuRecursivo/boletines/informe_de_gobernabilidad_may2020.pdf (accessed on 6 November 2020).

[12] OECD (2019), La Integridad Pública en América Latina y el Caribe 2018-2019: De Gobiernos reactivos a Estados proactivos, OECD, Paris, http://www.oecd.org/gov/integridad/integridad-publica-en-america-latina-caribe-2018-2019.htm (accessed on 25 February 2020).

[3] OECD (2019), Offices of Institutional Integrity in Peru: Implementing the Integrity System, OECD, Paris, http://www.oecd.org/gov/ethics/offices-of-institutional-integrity-peru.pdf.

[18] OECD (2018), OECD Integrity Review of Nuevo León, Mexico: Sustaining Integrity Reforms, OECD Public Governance Reviews, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264284463-en.

[16] OECD (2017), OECD Integrity Review of Mexico: Taking a Stronger Stance Against Corruption, OECD Public Governance Reviews, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264273207-en.

[10] OECD (2017), OECD Integrity Review of Peru: Enhancing Public Sector Integrity for Inclusive Growth, OECD Public Governance Reviews, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264271029-en.

[9] OECD (2017), OECD Recommendation of the Council on Public Integrity, OECD/LEGAL/0435, https://legalinstruments.oecd.org/en/instruments/OECD-LEGAL-0435.

[15] OECD (2017), Preventing Policy Capture: Integrity in Public Decision Making, OECD Public Governance Reviews, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264065239-en.

[13] OECD (2016), OECD Public Governance Reviews: Peru: Integrated Governance for Inclusive Growth, OECD Public Governance Reviews, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264265172-en.

[14] Organismo Supervisor de las Contrataciones del Estado, OSCE (2020), Diagnóstico y Estrategia para la Gestión de Riesgos en Contratación Pública, https://cdn.www.gob.pe/uploads/document/file/1038474/Diagn%C3%B3stico_y_Estrategia_para_la_Gestion_de_Riesgos_en_Contrataci%C3%B3n_P%C3%BAblica.pdf (accessed on 29 September 2020).

[17] Presidencia del Consejo de Ministros, PCM (n.d.), Semana de la Integridad 2019, https://www.gob.pe/institucion/pcm/campa%C3%B1as/578-semana-de-la-integridad-2019 (accessed on 5 May 2020).

[1] Shack, Pérez and Portugal (2020), “Cálculo del tamaño de la corrupción y la inconducta funcional en el Perú: Una aproximación exploratoria. Documento de Política en Control Gubernamental”, Contraloría General de la República, Lima, Perú, https://doc.contraloria.gob.pe/estudios-especiales/documento_trabajo/2020/Calculo_de_la_Corrupcion_en_el_Peru.pdf (accessed on 6 November 2020).

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