Corruption risks in the green economy
Johanna Gisladottir1,2,3, Kristin Vala Ragnarsdottir2, Ingrid Stjernquist3, Sigurbjörg Sigurgeirsdottir1
1Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland; 2Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland; 3Department of Geography, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden
Corruption acts as a major obstacle for sustainable development and the links and feedbacks between corruption and natural resources have been investigated insufficiently. We argue that corruption not only impacts socio-economic development, but also has a significant impact on the environment. The current dominant economic model drives resource scarcities as well as social and economic inequality. The green economy is seen as an advancement away from it since it emphasises reaching social equality and improve human well-being without going beyond the ecological thresholds of the planet. The aim is to map out through system analysis which patterns of corruption are common for several natural resources and explore what that means for sustainable development. A special focus will be put on analysing the corruption risks that promote inefficiencies in resource use that could endanger the green economy. The method we adhere to is a part of the system dynamics paradigm and entails the use of causal loop diagrams. Many of the critical resources that are necessary for many of the proposed technological solutions for the green economy can be found in countries that score low on the Corruption Perceptions Index. The green economy paradigm is a novel path to a sustainable world and achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030. However, this paper can provide the starting point for an analysis on the corruption risks involved that can act as obstacles and help to identify possible intervention points to uncover the full potential of the green economy.