Managing corruption in higher education in Moldova
The Ministry of Education and Youth (MET) has recently become more active in addressing academic corruption, and on January 18, 2007, an action plan to prevent and combat corruption in the education system was authorized in collaboration with the Center for Combating Economic Crime and Corruption. The present study attempts to provide MET with a framework to understand the dynamics of corruption in higher education, with a focus on cheating and bribery for grades. This coincides with the action plan's sixth goal of "identify[ing] the condition and causes favoring corruption in the education system" by the third quarter of 2007. We develop a conceptual model to understand the conditions under which students and teachers are more likely to engage in academic corruption. To explain how universities shifted from a relatively uncorrupt equilibrium to one where corruption has become a prominent feature in classrooms, we isolate the Soviet breakup as a tipping point and analyze how the factors in our model changed over time.