Heading Off Corruption: Indonesia Acts to Meet UN Standards, 2010-2016


In 2010, Indonesia planning agency official Diani Sadiawati acquired a mandate to expand the government’s anticorruption measures. Sadiawati sought to bring the country in line with its obligations under the United Nations Convention against Corruption. The country’s powerful anticorruption agency already had a full agenda and there was plenty more to do. With support from top-level officials, especially reform-minded Vice President Boediono, Sadiawati and her colleagues focused on prevention of corruption. With help from the president’s delivery unit, they began to coordinate actions among a large number of government agencies, overcome resistance to reform, and develop a system for monitoring impact and tracking progress. By 2014, the agencies had met 88% of the targets they had committed to. Civil society observers said the program had not treated many of the root problems, however, thereby underscoring the need for further work. In 2017, new President Joko Widodo leant his support but asked for a number of changes as the program moved into its next phase.

Tristan Dreisbach drafted this case study based on interviews conducted in Jakarta in May and June 2017. The British Academy-Department for International Development AntiCorruption Evidence (ACE) Program funded the development of this case study. Case published August 2017.

UN Convention Against Corruption
national anti-corruption strategy
corruption prevention
setting priorities
Focus Area(s)
Critical Tasks
Building inter-agency cooperation
Compliance with international law
Core Challenge
Institutional traps (spoilers)
Country of Reform
Case Studies
Tristan Dreisbach