Success in the fight against corruption requires a global, clever, and nimble response.

Citizens listen intently to the discussion of the 2019-2020 county budget on Ratego FM in Siaya County, Kenya.
Citizens listen intently to the discussion of the 2019-2020 county budget on Ratego FM in Siaya County, Kenya. USAID’s Agile Harmonized Assistance for Devolved Institutions (AHADI) supports Kenyan institutions to promote transparent, accountable, effective service delivery, and responsive governance systems.
Photo by Amunga Eshuchi

Transnational corruption strips countries of their wealth that should be used to lift people out of poverty and deliver much-needed social services.

As Administrator Samantha Power explained in laying out her vision for USAID in November 2021, corruption is development in reverse. When money gets diverted from public coffers to private bank accounts, roads and schools do not get built. When politicians use their positions of power to extort and demand payment for basic health services–like vaccines–citizens suffer. And when high-level government officials are persuaded to do the bidding of foreign nations through bribery or coercion, entire ministries are repurposed to advance the needs of another country, over the needs of their own citizens, eroding faith in democracy itself.

As the vanguard of USAID’s suite of anti-corruption programs in the Presidential Initiative for Democratic Renewal, the Countering Transnational Corruption Grand Challenge for Development (CTC Grand Challenge) leverages innovation and collaboration to prevent corrupt actors from siphoning off critical resources that should be used for the public good. The CTC Grand Challenge solutions will detect and disrupt illicit finance and trafficking in commodities; strengthen transparency and accountability in global supply chains; promote standards, practices, and norms that enhance integrity in the public and private sectors; and address other significant dynamics of transnational corruption.

We will do so by:

  • Harnessing the power of both novel and proven approaches, tools, and technologies;
  • Mobilizing and leveraging the private sector; 
  • Partnering with local solvers and influencers; and
  • Fostering collective action through diverse networks.

Grand Challenges leverage the knowledge and expertise of diverse stakeholders, including the private sector and local actors, to support collective problem solving and identification of new solutions. By mobilizing their convening power and networks, Grand Challenge partners draw global attention to a development problem and bring new voices to the table – building a coalition that is diverse, powerful, and agile.

To date, across eleven past Grand Challenges, USAID and its partners have committed more than $500 million in grants and technical assistance and catalyzed an additional $900 million in external follow-on funding, providing innovators with the expertise, resources, and networks that they need to grow.

We invite you to join us. The Grand Challenge is mobilizing a wide range of partners, including businesses, associations, technologists, innovators, philanthropists, civil society organizations, governments, and media in the fight against globalized corruption. Convened and incentivized by the Grand Challenge, these partners will build coalitions and source innovation solutions to curb the threat of transnational corruption. 

Prospective partners are invited to pledge resources, expertise, or technical assistance to contribute to the design and implementation of the Grand Challenge. Partnership tiers are flexible, allowing organizations to participate as their bandwidth permits.

Interested in learning more about how you can get involved in the Grand Challenge?

ACTIVITY UPDATE: We are pleased to announce the selection of 20 semi-finalists in the JET Minerals Challenge!

Launched in 2022, the JET Minerals Challenge catalyzes the development, application, and scaling of innovations to counter corruption and strengthen transparency, accountability, and integrity in the global rush to meet the unprecedented demand for green minerals. This open call for innovation welcomed problem solvers from around the world to submit new ideas as well as proven approaches to reduce corruption in green mineral supply chains. USAID, with the help of industry experts, narrowed down nearly 60 concepts to 20 semi-finalists, representing significant geographic and sectoral diversity.

JET Minerals Challenge semi-finalist concepts focus on three technical areas: constraining opportunities for corruption, raising the costs of corruption, and incentivizing integrity in the public and private sectors. Watch the 2023 Summit for Democracy announcement and read Administrator Power’s comments.

Semi-finalists will join an in-person two-day innovation bootcamp, hosted alongside the OECD Forum on Responsible Mineral Supply Chains in April 2023. You can follow their journey and receive updates on the successful finalists on our website or by joining our CTC Grand Challenge network by emailing us at

Hanf et al. 2011, cited in Transparency International 2019
New York Times 2021
Allianz 2020
4  Remarks by President Biden before the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

    anti-corruption Grand Challenge