Peru was elected Chair of International IDEA for 2017 by the Council of Member States on 8-9 December 2016. Taking up its new role, Peru has set "Corruption: A threat towards a democracy of quality" as the theme of its Chairship.
Corrupt practices threatens the stability, security and development of societies. They undermine both the institutions and the core values of democracy. Corruption also jeopardizes the progress towards sustainable development by diverting large funds from citizens. It is often linked to organized crime and risks undermining the rule of law and effectively, the trust of citizens in democratic institutions and politicians. Corruption is rarely concentrated to a certain economic sector or specific institution. It cannot be explained by a single factor since it takes different forms in the social, political and economic landscapes of the countries facing it.
The Peruvian Chairship of International IDEA will work to promote reflection, debate and an exchange of ideas on the dynamics that exist between corruption and politics. The goal of the initiatives under the Chairship is to identify relevant measures that strengthens the integrity of institutions and makes existing anti-corruption strategies more effective. The focus of the Chairship goes in line with the policies promoted by the Peruvian Government to promote integrity, accountability and transparent management of public affairs and public goods to make sure that society as a whole is involved in the fight against corruption, which is one of the main barriers to improving the quality of democracy.
The Chairship also draws on and seeks to complement the existing programmes and comparative knowledge resources developed by International IDEA. The organization has developed a significant expertise around the role of money in politics and political finance, and comparative studies on how organized crime and illicit funding can subvert political processes and threaten the integrity of electoral processes. International IDEA has a long-standing programme in Peru based in Lima. Headed by Percy Medina, the programme has convened dialogues and seminars with government, political parties, civil society and academic institutions on the quality of democracy in Latin America, including discussion on the influence of organized crime on democracy and political finance in the region.