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Land rezoning, sales, and planning approvals are just a few of the ways ‘grey gifts’ can decide who benefits from government decisions. Dean Lewins/AAP

Speaking with: Cameron Murray on grey corruption and the ‘Game of Mates’

Speaking with: Cameron Murray on grey corruption and the ‘Game of Mates’

The role of declared gifts and donations has driven a lot of discussion around government corruption in recent years. But what about the clique of developers, banks and superannuation companies who reap the benefits of policies and approvals that preserve monopolies?

How do we decide who the winners and losers are in society, without even going into the more obvious acts of money changing hands for sweetheart deals between friends?

Cameron Murray is a lecturer in economics at the University of Queensland and the co-author (with Paul Frijters) of the Game of Mates. The book explores the murky world of “grey gifts”: favours and promises given to bureaucrats and politicians in order to secure favourable decisions and judgements.

The University of Melbourne’s William Isdale spoke with Murray on how these arrangements occur, who benefits, and who ultimately foots the bill.

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