This paper analyses patterns of corruption and corruption risks related to community mineral beneficiation schemes (CMBSs) that distribute benefits funded by mineral revenues to communities. It analyses insights from existing scholarship on CMBSs, evidence from seven cases of corruption, and lessons from guidance documents on reducing corruption in the mining value chain. The aim of the paper is to stimulate debate and further research about the suitability of anti-corruption strategies for CMBSs. It argues a key flaw in these materials is that they lose sight of the fundamental purpose of CBMSs: local-level development controlled by the community. Existing work on corruption in CMBSs places too much emphasis on administrative measures to manage risks and prevent wrongdoing. A better approach is to first understand local political dynamics and ambitions for development, and then use these insights to improve CMBS design. The optimal mix of anti-corruption initiatives will flow from this work, including clarity about which measures are best controlled by which stakeholders. This paper makes 10 policy recommendations to improve CMBS design or reform CBMSs so they deliver benefits, enhance community control over development and better control corruption.
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