United States Office of Government Ethics, Preventing Conflicts of Interest in the Executive Branch

Enhancing the International Dialogue on Good Governance
April 6, 2015

by Walter M. Shaub, Jr.

OGE's international activities serve two simple but powerful purposes: We enhance the global dialogue on good governance by sharing OGE's experience in government ethics, and we learn from the experiences of our colleagues around the world. OGE's international work is conducted under the auspices of the State Department, which coordinates United States foreign policy. 

Recently, as part of an ongoing international peer-review process, we participated in a review of the United States' implementation of the Inter-American Convention Against Corruption. OGE was one of several United States anti-corruption oversight bodies analyzed by our international peers in this round of review. To facilitate the review, we provided detailed information regarding our efforts to prevent conflicts of interest in the executive branch and participated in a site visit by a group of expert international reviewers. We then commented on the draft report detailing the reviewers' findings. The process culminated in a March 20, 2015 plenary meeting of the mechanism's Committee of Experts to finalize the report on the United States.

In addition to participating in the peer-review process, OGE supports the United States in international anti-corruption efforts through a variety of other activities. Our support of these efforts includes providing technical assistance on good governance and anti-corruption issues in support of the United States' participation in intergovernmental and international regional bodies. We also regularly meet with foreign delegations to share information about the executive branch ethics program and how that program fits under the broader rubric of anti-corruption, good governance, and transparency. Many of these delegations come to OGE through the State Department's International Visitor Leadership Program. Since the beginning of fiscal year 2015, we have provided briefings to approximately 200 international visitors from 44 different countries, including China, Brazil, Spain, and Iraq.

Through our international work, we help build a global vision and a common commitment to fighting corruption and promoting good governance.