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Lie Detectors Used in Fight Against Corruption

Published: August 31, 2014 (Issue # 1826)



  • After the testing, employees are divided into three categories: Those who fall into the "green zone," the "yellow zone" and the "red zone."
    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

More than 600 Russian civil servants have undergone lie detector tests this year— a practice that has had a positive effect on weeding out those who are liable to corruption, a city official said Friday.

"By the end of the year, polygraph tests will be conducted on another 1,000 employees, from members of procurement committees and contractual services," a spokesperson from the country's department for competition policy told Interfax news agency on Friday.

Gennady Degtyev, the head of the department, praised the polygraph tests as making the hiring process easier and the work of civil servants run more smoothly, according to the department's press service.

"Heads of many state bodies in the capital have appreciated the effect of the polygraph testing, so the tests have become a requirement for starting a [civil servant] job or being appointed to a post. Not a single head of contractual services can be appointed without undergoing the polygraph procedure," Degtyev said, Interfax reported.

The testing allows managers to weed out those employees who pose a risk of violating rules or engaging in corrupt behavior, and sheds light on what's motivating officials, Degtyev said.

After the testing, employees are divided into three categories: those who fall into the "green zone," the "yellow zone" and the "red zone."

The green zone, which about 60 percent of employees fall into, indicates general reliability.

Another 25 percent of employees are categorized as belonging to the "yellow zone," meaning they present a minor risk, the department's press service told Interfax.

The remaining 15 percent, which comprise the "red zone," are generally regarded as posing a greater risk of being liable to corruption and thus are rotated between positions more often, the press service said.

To prevent any biased decisions in the polygraph process, a council of between four and six polygraph specialists takes part in each procedure.

Lie detector tests are commonly used to screen government employees, and the Interior Ministry made them a requirement for police and security service officers last fall in a bid to crack down on corruption, RIA Novosti reported.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Oct. 24


SPIBA’s ongoing “Breakfast with the Director” series continues today, featuring Tomas Hajek, Managing Director of the Northwest Division at Danone Russia. Hajek will be discussing collaborations between businesses from different cultures. The meeting is at 9 a.m. at the Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel and all who wish to attend must confirm their participation by Oct. 23.


Get your gong on at “Sounds of the Universe,” a concert at the city planetarium this evening incorporating six different gongs to create relaxing songs that will transport you upwards into the stratosphere. Tickets are 700 rubles ($17).



Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop culture, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the club’s website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit “Neophobia” at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBA’s Marketing and Communications Committee’s round table discussion on “Government Relations Practices in Russia” this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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