Mobilising China’s future leaders against corruption

Mobilising China’s future leaders against corruption

Our chapter in China, with support from Integrity Action, is starting a student-led movement against corruption through a range of activities designed to raise awareness about integrity issues. The first student integrity event was held in December 2011 to mark United Nations Anti-Corruption Day. Twenty-two universities and more than 19, 000 students took part.

By 2013, the number of students participating in Anti-Corruption Day events organised by Transparency International China and Integrity Action had swelled to 100,000 students from 19 cities.

Creating a culture of integrity to combat the culture of corruption

The goal of the programme, broken down into three key areas, is to foster an “integrity culture” and change social attitudes and behaviors among the next generation to combat a culture of corruption, which is today nurtured by social acceptance.

Our research shows that the message is welcome. More than half the number of the people in our 2010-2011 survey on corruption perceptions in China said they would fight corruption.

As part of the integrity programme, students learn about the true cost of corruption and are shown how to be agents of change in society. The students also learn about the different forms of corruption – from grand corruption to more subtle issues such as conflicts of interest, not just the blatant soliciting of bribes. The students are then asked to proactively organise anti-corruption events in their communities.

Transparency International China’s integrity-promoting programme

Ambassador scheme

This is where top integrity students are selected to take the anti-corruption message back to their local communities by organising events to spread anti-corruption messages and encouraging people to report their cases of corruption.

Summer camps

The annual integrity camp combines a mixture of outdoor team-building exercises, lectures where corruption cases in various sectors are analysed, and activities where students share experiences of corruption and why they chose to be involved with the integrity programme.

Student Integrity Associations

The Student Integrity Association (SIA) chapters in universities form a base to engage more volunteers and expand the integrity-promoting work. By the end of 2013, there were 33 SIAs and the goal is to reach 40 by the end of 2014.

Creating long-lasting impact

China’s problems with corruption are well-documented. Just over half the number of people in China say corrupt officials are a big problem; top leaders have made headlines in the global media for holding assets in off-shore companies in secrecy jurisdictions and illicit out-flows were estimated at US$3.79 trillion between 2000 and 2011. The question is whether a grassroots movement can take on this pervasive problem in China.

Our chapter in China and the students involved in efforts to combat corruption believe small stands against it can snowball to bring change.

After my graduation, I want to be a politics teacher in high school where my anti-corruption messages and integrity ideas can be passed on to my students.”

– Liu Hetao, Integrity Ambassador from Nantong University

Transparency International China is continuing to connect and rally young people in the fight against corruption and further the reach of the student network. 

A recent survey of universities shows a demand from students for incorporating integrity training into the curriculum. China has 2,500 universities and colleges but, only 33 have a Student Integrity Association and 15 offer an integrity education curriculum

Students from different universities got the chance to get to know each other, to communicate what they had done and what they planned to do as a youth integrity leader. All this information became a useful resource and reference for my development and our integrity association.”

– Yangkai, a student from Hunan University

Outreach to young people

Transparency International chapters in other countries are also focusing on youth integrity and anti-corruption training.

For example, Transparency International Cambodia offers a youth camp that provides 130 young people with the opportunity to learn from the Anti-Corruption Unit, media, and prominent youth leaders in how to demand for better governance.

In July 2014 Transparency International Lithuania will also welcome some 140 future leaders from over 60 countries for a week-long School on Integrity in the country’s capital, Vilnius.

For any press enquiries please contact


Support Transparency International

Apply Now for Transparency International School on Integrity!

Apply today for the Transparency School 2018 and spend an insightful week with anti-corruption enthusiasts from all over the world!

Blog: Making Summits Meaningful: A How to Guide for Heads of Government

Heads of Government spend a lot of time in glitzy international summits. World leaders shouldn't fly around the world just for a photo op or to announce new commitments they have no intention of keeping. Here's is a how-to guide for Heads of Government to make summits meaningful.

Urging leaders to act against corruption in the Americas

The hot topic at this week's Summit of the Americas is how governments can combat corruption at the highest levels across North and South America.

The impact of land corruption on women: insights from Africa

As part of International Women’s Day, Transparency International is launching the Women, Land and Corruption resource book. This is a collection of unique articles and research findings that describe and analyse the prevalence of land corruption in Africa – and its disproportionate effect on women – presented together with innovative responses from organisations across the continent.

Passport dealers of Europe: navigating the Golden Visa market

Coast or mountains? Real estate or business investment? Want your money back in five years? If you're rich, there are an array of options for European ‘Golden Visas’ at your fingertips, each granting EU residence or citizenship rights.

How the G20 can make state-owned enterprises champions of integrity

For the first time in its presidency of the G20, Argentina is hosting country representatives from across the globe to address the best ways of curtailing corruption and promoting integrity in state-owned enterprises (SOEs).

Europe and Central Asia: More civil engagement needed (Part II)

As follow-up to the regional analysis of Eastern Europe and Central Asia, additional examples from Albania, Kosovo and Georgia highlight the need for more progress in anti-corruption efforts in these countries and across the region.

Lutte contre la corruption en Afrique: Du bon et du moins bon

La publication de la dernière édition de l’Indice de perception de la corruption (IPC) offre un bon point de repère pour situer les efforts de lutte contre la corruption que l’Union africaine (UA) poursuivra tout au long de 2018

No hay cambios en las percepciones pese a los avances en América

En los últimos años, América Latina y el Caribe lograron adelantos significativos en la lucha contra la corrupción. En muchos países de la región existen ahora leyes y mecanismos para contrarrestar este fenómeno, las investigaciones legales están avanzando y los movimientos ciudadanos anticorrupción han incrementado. Sin embargo, de acuerdo con el Índice de Percepción de la Corrupción (IPC) 2017, la región continúa con bajos puntajes.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media

Would you like to know more?

Sign up to stay informed about corruption news and our work around the world