February 20th, 2017 Posted by No Comment yet

In 2017, Lear Conference together with the Global Procurement Conference are organizing an international event: “Public Procurement Days”. During the three days, the two conferences will encourage an intensive exchange of ideas and experiences on issues of public procurement & competition policy.

Lear Conference 2017 “PUBLIC PROCUREMENT & COMPETITION POLICY” will bring together experts from a wide range of fields including academia, international organizations, law firms, public authorities and the private sector, encouraging a comprehensive debate on the current challenges related to competition in public procurement.

Among the covered topics:

Are competition policy and contracting authorities friends or foes? Which is the relationship between corruption and collusion? How to solve the problem of conflicting policy choices when tackling corruption and collusion? What are the screening tools developed to detect collusion in public procurement? How the availability of a large set of information (big data) may be exploited to enhance the reliability of these tools? Which type of circumstantial evidence can be deemed sufficient to legally prove bid-rigging? What measures can be adopted to encourage contracting authorities to seek compensation through actions for damages for the harm suffered by citizens and taxpayers?


Centro Studi Americani
Via Michelangelo Caetani 32

Meet DIGIWHIST researchers Mihály Fazekas and István János Tóth at the third session of the conference on 03.07.2017 from 15.00pm – 16.30pm and discuss with them during the Q&A after the session:

Third session – Screening tools and big data
Cartels conviction requires the collection of evidence that meets a high standard of proof. According to the EU case law, to prove an infringement the existence of an anticompetitive agreement must be the only plausible explanation of the observed behavior. Therefore, competition authorities look for documentary evidence to prove their allegations. However, firms have become very smart in concealing evidence of their misbehavior, making cartel prosecution very hard. Economics can help mitigating the problem in two ways. First, economic analysis can be used to select markets or cases in which illegal collusion is a plausible explanation of the observed outcome and participants’ conduct. These screening tools may help focusing investigations in those cases in which the actual existence of a cartel is more likely. Second, it may help collecting circumstantial evidence to be used to prove the infringement. Although this type of evidence is rarely sufficient to meet the required standard of proof, it can corroborate other pieces of evidence and contribute to a successful cartel prosecution.

The third session deals with screening tools. What are the screening tools developed in the economic literature? Are they effective? What are the risks of false positive or false negative? What is their data requirement? How the availability of a large set of information (big data) may be exploited to enhance the reliability of these tools? Who should be in charge of their use?

Francesco Decarolis, Boston University
Mihály Fazekas, University of Cambridge
István János Tóth, Corruption Research Center Budapest (CRCB)

DIGIWHIST indicators workshop

January 27th, 2017 Posted by No Comment yet


Recognising the growing interest and many parallel projects on measuring corruption risks in public procurement across the globe, this workshop is aiming to review progress to-date and assess different measurement approaches. The workshop is part of the ongoing large-scale EU funded research project DIGIWHIST. The workshop will provide a highly interactive and structured discussion forum for researchers, governments, journalists, as well as NGOs wishing to develop and apply bespoke corruption proxies which are fit for their environments and their particular needs. By offering a unique insight into the ongoing data collection efforts covering 35 European jurisdictions and the indicator building opportunities this work opens up, we hope to galvanize the academic and policy field and inspire future work.

Expected outcomes

1) Clear indicator selection criteria and solid understanding of how to tailor and test promising corruption proxies;

2) Clear set of indicators passing validity tests and a set of promising indicators which may be developed to reach sufficient validity; and

3) Establishing a community of researchers and users working in the field supporting ongoing work.

Fee schedule

–              Non-DIGIWHIST participants: 150 GBP

–              Non-DIGIWHIST presenters: 400 GBP

–              Fees cover refreshments during the workshop, room and background material for all participants. For presenters feedback and support during preparations and the workshop is also included.

–              Discounts are available on needs basis (e.g. students, NGOs) and subject to budget contracts of DIGIWHIST (on a first come, first served basis).



Data for Sustainable Growth

November 11th, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

The conference Data for Sustainable Growth will focus on demonstrating the best practices and cases of using big data, open data and G2G shared data to enhance the evidence based decision making with the special focus on the public sector, NGOs and state governance. Participants will discuss how an access to open data and data analysis can be applied to improve policy making in the region.

The organizers expect around 250 attendees, stakeholders and experts from Ukraine and other countries of Eastern Europe and CIS, specifically from Poland, Belarus, and Kazakhstan.

DIGIWHIST researcher Daniel Tanis will be leading a workshop on “Mining for Corruption” in the afternoon of November 19, 2016.

The Regional Studies Association Winter Conference 2016: NEW PRESSURES ON CITIES AND REGIONS

November 2nd, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

This conference provides an intellectual and policy-relevant platform for scholars around the world to address the new and emerging challenges facing cities and regions. The global economic slowdown poses major concerns to many territories – through shortfalls in employment, household incomes, corporate profitability and tax revenues. The steel industry has been one of the hardest hit, forcing massive plant closures and redundancies from China to the UK. Austerity in public finances threatens the infrastructure required to lay the foundation for future growth and development. Economic uncertainties and uneven development also contribute to growing social unrest and new waves of international migration. Heightened regulation of the banks and other financial institutions is bound to have an impact on the funding of house-building and other real estate development, with uncertain consequences. Meanwhile the accelerating pace of technological change in many industries and occupations means different skills and capabilities are required of the workforce, causing painful adjustments for many communities. And looming concerns about climate change and accelerating environmental degradation complicate the task of urban and regional revitalisation.

The 2016 Winter Conference of the Regional Studies Association presents a timely opportunity to discuss these issues, to clarify the research imperatives, and to consider the challenges facing policymakers and practitioners. The conference organisers are keen to attract papers and sessions that address a broad research and policy agenda, including contributions from any discipline which can offer relevant insights into the urban-regional-global nexus.

G20 Seminar on Corruption and the Global Economy

November 2nd, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

A Seminar on Corruption & Global Economy is  organised by the Chinese Presidency of the G20 and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on Monday, 17 October 2016 in the OECD Headquarters in Paris. This event will be followed by a two day G20 Anti Corruption Working Group (ACWG) meeting.

The purpose of the seminar is to discuss the relationship between corruption and economic growth by exploring the impact of anti-corruption policies on macro-economic performance and financial stability and its effect on sustainable and inclusive growth. It will also provide an opportunity to discuss practical experiences with implementing corruption mitigation measures and how to strengthen the evidence-base of integrity and anti-corruption policies.

The seminar hosts experts from OECD, IMF and World Bank as well as Economists & Researchers from leading Universities. Our DIGIWHIST researcher Mihaly Fazekas from the University of Cambridge will be speaking at a round table on “Strengthening the evidence-base of integrity and anticorruption policies”.


4th International Open Data Conference

September 19th, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

IODC is the essential meeting point for the global community to debate and study the future of open data.

IODC aims to build stronger relationships between open data initiatives from the different governments and establish a dialogue between these voices:

  • Policy makers and Public Sector Information (PSI) holders
  • Private companies, startups and freelancers
  • Activists and NGO’s
  • Data journalism
  • Representatives of civil society from all over the world.

The differentiating nature of the event is that it gathers countries from the northern and southern hemispheres to define tendencies and establish global policies of collaboration, with the objective of stimulating the progress of open data globally.

Titled “Global goals, local impact” the fourth IODC will reconvene the expanding community to showcase successes, confront shared challenges, and help ensure that the IODC’s vision and diverse initiatives continue to coordinate effectively.

Prior to the official opening of the IODC 2016, October 6-7, a large number of preconference meetings will be held in Madrid on October 3, 4 and 5 by government and civil society open data groups.

The upcoming edition of IODC will be built on the successful experience of IODC 2015 and will also take into consideration the results of many other relevant Open Data events, leveraging the momentum of the existing collaborations of the growing Open Data community, to release and expand the potential of Open Data.

The agenda of the event will be focused on the 3 main objectives of the Conference:

  1. Bring together the most innovative and practical Open Data solutions that are driving social and economic impact on areas such as health, gender, cities, education, science, agriculture and many more.
  2. Identify and explore both new opportunities and new debates that are shaping the Open Data agenda.
  3. Consolidate an international partnership on Open Data able to drive the development of global common resources for the international Open Data community.

As a global event, the conference will provide significant learning and a space for networking and collaboration for all national and international participants in government, private sector and civil society, who will learn from the best international Open Data experts.

The Global Open Data community will be not only invited, but truly encouraged to send their contributions for the agenda of the three main tracks in which the event is organized:Impact, Sharing and Action.

Open Government Partnership Global Summit 2016

July 1st, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

Launched in 2011, the Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a multilateral initiative which currently brings together 69 member states, NGOs and representatives from civil society in a collegial governance.

At the global level, OGP is committed to promoting the principles of open and transparent government through civic consultation and participation, reinforcing public integrity and the fight against corruption, and increasing access to new technologies to foster democracy, promote innovation and stimulate progress. Since the OGP’s creation, participating countries have made over 2,000 commitments to make their governments more open and accountable.

As a forum for sharing best practices, OGP provides a unique platform that brings together, stimulates and expands the community of state reformers worldwide.

France will serve as Lead Chair on the OGP steering committee from October 2016 with Manish Bapna, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of the World Resources Institute. As such, France will host the OGP Global Summit at the end of the year.Representatives from governments, academia, civil society and international organizations will gather to share their experiences and best practices and push forward the open government global agenda in light of the great challenges of the modern world. Jean-Vincent Placé, Minister of State for State Reform and Simplification, is the French government representative to the OGP.

The OGP Global Summit 2016 will take place in Paris, France on December 7, 8 and 9. The agenda for the Global Summit will be based on an open call for proposals from the entire open government community. The final agenda will be announced in September.

The 34th Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime: Economic Crime – where does the buck stop? Who is responsible – facilitators, controllers and or their advisers?

June 23rd, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

The thirty-fourth international symposium on economic crime has an ambitious programme both in terms of objective and content. This year the symposium seeks to address perhaps the most significant question in any system – simply put, where should the ‘buck stop?’ – for committing or facilitating misconduct, that undermines stability, security and development. Who should society, through its various systems whether of law, compliance or public criticism, blame for crimes perpetrated against, through or with our financial and business structures? This is not just an issue of confidence or doing the right thing, but reinforcing integrity without which our systems and markets will suffer.

There is also the issue of whether we, in seeking to impose fines and other forms of condemnation on those who have simply ‘permitted’ misconduct to occur, disproportionately penalise and indirectly harm those who we should be protecting. The recent financial crisis, compounded by the increased use of financial sanctions, together with our near obsession with attempting to inhibit money laundering and create financial intelligence, have arguably created unsustainable risks for those who in the ordinary course of their business mind other people’s wealth and for those who advise them.

The symposium was conceived to promote understanding of the real issues in controlling economically motivated crime and facilitate co-operation and effective action – ideally preventive. The symposium is supported by a number of governments and their agencies, with some of the world’s leading universities, research organisations, the professions and, of course, those in the financial and business sectors, from around the world. This year over 600 specialists, most with topical and practical experience, will address in plenary sessions, workshops and think tanks as many issues pertaining to the real concerns of those at the ‘coal face’ and their managers. Over 1,600 participants from nearly 100 different countries are expected. The opportunities for networking and developing meaningful co-operation are unique.

Those who are concerned to protect and promote the integrity and wellbeing of their national economy, institution or enterprise – or who are concerned to better understand the risks facing business today, cannot afford to miss this very special event.

Here is the direct link to the 34th Symposium programme.


June 6th, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet

The University of Rome Tor Vergata, with the School of Economics, is organizing the First Global Procurement Conference for July 4th and 5th 2016, to take place within the beautiful setting of the University’s XV century Villa Mondragone in Frascati (Rome).

The goal of the Global Procurement Conference is to raise awareness for the planetary implications of joint decisions regarding what is purchased, how and for whom in the public domain.

Thanks to a partnership with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the University of Rome Tor Vergata has the pleasure of presenting the conference speakers, experts from International Financial Institutions and regulatory bodies, policy-makers, economists, lawyers, public procurers that will engage in a much-needed debate concerning issues related to innovation, competitiveness, sustainability and regulation in procurement worldwide.

3rd Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement

April 15th, 2016 Posted by No Comment yet


The Faculty of Law of the University of Belgrade and the Faculty of Economics of the University of Rome Tor Vergata are pleased to announce the launch of the 3rd Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement.

Goals and Motivations

The aim of the Symposium is to bring together economists and lawyers in the field of public procurement through dialogue and discourse. The organizers have the ambition to reduce the terminology barrier between economists and lawyers, come across cultural divide and reach joint wider understanding of practical issues. The Symposium attempts to suggest reform measures for better rules of acquisition for Public Administrations and provides a platform for the discourse on the challenging issues of the modern practices in public procurement.

While topics and references will certainly involve the European Union environment it shall not be limited to this area, taking advantage of best practices worldwide.


The Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement is a series of extremely successful events that were held in the leading European capitals and hosted renowned experts, researchers and scientists in the field of public procurement.

Previous editions

1st Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement (6-7 June 2011, Rome, Italy)
2nd Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement (22-23 September 2014, Budapest, Hungary)

Programme agenda
The Symposium will be held from Thursday, September 28th to Friday, September 30th 2016. The planned working hours will be from 09:00 to 17:30. The Third edition of the Interdisciplinary Symposium on Public Procurement will be focused on four themes:

  • Local preferences
  • Joint procurement
  • Big Data
  • Renegotiation