THE NIGERIAN JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY
Volume 11, No. 1, (2013)
Understanding Corruption in Nigeria: The Social Exchange Perspective
Israel Dantata Sule
Department of Sociology Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
There are several challenges that confront one who wants to interrogate corruption in Nigeria. One of such challenges is to ascertain the theoretical perspective that is suitable to explain the ubiquitous nature of the phenomenon and hence proffer a remedy. The paper argues that corruption should also be interrogated through the prism of Richard Emerson’s Power-dependence genre of Social Exchange Theoretical Approach. This theory has the capacity to account for the pervasiveness of the phenomenon by locating it within the context of relationships that are determined and underguarded by dependence and the proximity of actors to power in everyday life. The paper further posits en passant that corruption cannot be understood outside these variables in any geo-political clime. The paper concludes that this theoretical approach is relevant and should be adopted to rethink and restructure the strategies to deal with the problem of corruption in Nigeria.
Keywords: corruption, social exchange, formal and informal sectors, powerdependence