Corruption-free Religions are Possible: Corruption, the abuse of public or personal power for private interests is almost as old as humanity. This book focuses on the sector of religious institutions.
Religious institutions are normally not-for-profit. Religious organisations run 100,000s of profit-making specialized services such as hospitals, universities, schools, elderly homes, companies, banks, micro finance institutions, farms etc. They often have the legal form of a not-for-profit foundation, trust or association with a supervisory control by the religious institution. Profiting from these activities is then not distributed to shareholders, but serves to build reserves for the sustainability and stability of the serving institution and if possible, to support core activities of the religious institution. Some religious institutions have large properties of land, buildings and other assets.
Many studies and experiences show that a number of religious institutions are affected by corruption and mirror the corrupt environment in which they live. All religions are potentially and — in reality — affected by corruption. All religions are part of the problem, but also part of the solution. And between religions, denominations and countries are clear differences.
This book includes twenty articles from Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, Catholic and Protestant perspective and international standards. It refers also to sexual corruption by religious leaders.
Corruption-free Religions are Possible
This book has three objectives: 1. to understand the mechanisms and roots of corruption in religions by analysis and information, 2. to encourage stronger commitment of religious institutions in fighting corruption as core part of their commitment to their faith and values, 3. to strengthen cooperation between people of different faith and religious institutions in order to increase impact in all sectors of society.
As Ethicist and Founder-President of the Swiss Chapter of Transparency International 1996-2006, the anticorruption cooperation between different world religions has been one of my goals for a long time.
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Corruption-free Religions are Possible. Integrity – Stewardship – Accountability. Christoph Stückelberger (Editor), Globethics.net Ethics Praxis No. 16, Geneva 2021. ISBN 978-2-88931-422-5 (online version), ISBN 978-2-88931-423-2 (print version).