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Title: The predicament of a rent-seeking society : a sociology of business-government relations in Indonesia
Author: Herry-Priyonu, Bernadinus.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3555 2452
Awarding Body: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Current Institution: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Date of Award: 2004
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Corruption within business-government relations is one of the pressing issues in contemporary political economy in Indonesia. The problem has been understood mainly in terms of the idea dominant in the existing literature on corruption, i. e., as it product of the overbearing intrusion of the state on business through the capricious and arbitrary actions of state bureaucrats. The view has been reinforced by the legacy of long-standing authoritarianism, in which state dominance under the Soeharto regime (1966-1998) has been perceived as one of the most significant determinants of the phenomenon. Based on the interviews with 86 respondents from business, government and other sectors, this study shows that the phenomenon of corruption within business government relations in Indonesia cannot be satisfactorily explained by the "grabbinghand" image of state bureaucrats. It is shown that businesses actively pursue the practices of purchase and capture of the existing rules of the game in the form of various rent-seeking activities. Instead of being treated as a dependent variable, these practices Should be conceived as an explanatory factor of the phenomenon. The capacity to conduct these practices is integral to the exercise of business power vis-a-vis other groups in society. The consequential exercise of business power involved in the practices suggests that the theoretical status of business power cannot be ruled out from the analysis of corruption within business-government relations. A more robust explanation of the phenomenon requires fundamental reassessments of the existing liberal and neo-liberal conceptions of the problem. In this respect, the public character of business and the poverty of the state-centred conception of power are highlighted. The theoretical thrust of the study is relevant for understanding similar problems in other areas.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available