Public Perception of Corruption in Slovakia in the post-1989 EraVerejné vnímanie korupcie v období po roku 1989

Verejné vnímanie korupcie v období po roku 1989

In the socialist era corruption was an organic part of the political, economical and social sphere. Since 1989 public discourse about this previously taboo topic has increased. Our aim is to highlight how the inhabitants of Slovakia perceive the present situation.
Available data measuring the level of Slovak corruption show that despite much-proclaimed effort of the responsible officials and despite some strategies trying to lower the level of corruption, the Slovak reality is far from exemplary. In public research about corruption Slovak people consider it one of the essential social problems. They especially point out the widespread corruption in national, regional and local levels. They clearly identify all societal branches as being involved in corruption (judiciary, health system, police, policy, state administration). Recently the level of percieved corruption has fallen, yet it still reaches a very high level.
On one hand the whole social climate of Slovakia is anticorruption, however, there is a contradiction to everyday practice. In real life corruption patterns and norms are widespread. A large amount of people have admitted having been asked to pay a bribe and even more people have given it. This individual and social schizophrenia appears in a) a low number of people willing to pursue corruption, b) general feeling that anti-corruption institutions are massively corrupted, c) feeling that accepting corruption supports it, and especially in d) contradiction between proclaimed and real behavior. The social atmosphere in Slovakia can be characterized as corrupted for these reasons.