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Govern your future: careers in anti-corruption

You’ll find out on our online Corruption and Governance MA that the past thirty years have witnessed exponential growth in anti-corruption activity. There are jobs for anti-corruption specialists in all areas of the economy: public sector, private sector, non-profit sector, international organisations, and anything else you can think of.

Many employers are looking for people with the skills to do such jobs. While there are an increasing number of candidates with practical experience, most applicants do not have the academic and theoretical background – and that’s what we can give you. Think of it this way: if you know how to fix your car, you may make a great motor mechanic. But if you have a degree in engineering, you’re more likely to end up running BMW.


Private sector roles

In the private sector, those positions are often within compliance, investigations or corporate responsibility teams. They are likely to be within larger companies, especially multinationals, and professional services firms such as accountants, consultants and risk advisory firms. Private sector roles to look out for would typically include:

· Anti-Bribery and Corruption (ABC) Risk Officer
· Compliance Manager
· Risk Management Specialist / Senior Risk Analyst
· Counter Fraud Practitioner


Business and Finance

The strengthening anti-money laundering legislation since the early 2000s has led to a particular growth in compliance positions within the finance sector. These roles typically require oversight of compliance with legal standards, but are also often broadened to include matters of ethics and integrity, as well as risk management for a range of challenges including fraud, bribery, data protection and trade risks.


Business and law

Legal practitioners can explore a niche route in their legal career by specialising in tackling corruption, in both the public sector and in private practice. The roles typically encompass risk management, investigations, prosecutions and – when a client has a problem – defence.



Public sector roles

Many countries around the world now have some form of anti-corruption agency, as well as a wider range of roles involving public standards and oversight of the institutions which act as a defence against corruption, such as parliamentary ethics and the integrity of elections. Certain high-risk institutions, like customs and revenue departments, may have their own anti-corruption teams. A specific niche in the public sector is within law enforcement agencies, which in many countries are separate from the anti-corruption agency.


Non-corruption avenues

Very few students of politics become politicians; very few students of economics become economists. Our MA will equip you with skills and insights, but that does not mean you need to look for a career specifically related to corruption. Corruption dominates today’s headlines and social media, whether it is populism, stolen elections, political funding, state capture, kleptocrats and oligarchs using the world as a playground, corporate bribe-paying, human trafficking or the collapse of fragile states.

Understanding how this fits together will give you unique insights into how the world works below the surface. That will be helpful in all sorts of roles that have no direct relationship to corruption. But more than anything else, it will give you the immense satisfaction of understanding world affairs to a depth that few people achieve.


Charge into your career

Studying an online Masters in Corruption and Governance at the University of Sussex will enable you to explore the breadth and depth of corruption: what it is, what causes it, and how to fight it. Drawing on expertise from the renowned Centre for the Study of Corruption, you’ll examine corrupt behaviour and activity within regional, sectoral and organisational contexts.

Graduating from the course will open a plethora of new and advanced career avenues, including anti-corruption roles. If you’re interested in finding out more, take a look at our Corruption and Governance MA (online) course page for further information.