The Use of Blockchain as a Resource for Combating Corruption in Global Shipping: An Interpretive Case Study

Suprateek Sarker, Stefan Henningsson, Thomas Jensen, Jonas Hedman*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Corruption is one of the most troubling societal challenges facing businesses today. Businesses have been combating corruption in fragmented ways, sometimes by creating anti-corruption policies applicable to certain stakeholders and, at other times, by harnessing digital technologies. Recently, the power of blockchain, with its capacity to provide full transactional disclosure and thereby reduce uncertainty, insecurity, and ambiguity in transactions, has been touted as being a game changer in the fight against corruption. Based on a study of the global shipping industry, we find that blockchain mitigates both process and document-related corruption. Based on these findings, we develop an understanding of how corruption may be combated using both social and digital/informational resources, including blockchain technology. Our model, drawing on past work on corruption, shows the complex interplay between identity, institutional actors, technical and other resources, and practices, and we develop conditions that could be effective in fighting corruption by using technologies such as blockchain.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Management Information Systems
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)338-373
Number of pages36
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Blockchain
  • Corruption
  • Fraud prevention
  • Global shipping
  • Anti-corruption methods
  • Interpretive case study

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