Bribery and fraud

Bribery and fraud are criminal offences under UK law and under the criminal codes of many other countries. They are activities that divert money and resources towards the personal gain of a few, often to the cost and detriment of the many. Globally they hinder growth of the legitimate economy, and act as a barrier to efficient and effective governance; their presence can also aggravate insecurity and potential conflict.

Within the context of the University’s undertakings, its use of public funds, and objectives for the advancement of learning for the wider benefit, such unethical activities clearly cannot be sanctioned or supported. In addition to ethical concerns, the incidence of bribery or fraud could have wide-reaching and practical implications that directly affect the primary work of departments and research groups.

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Areas where there is a higher risk of bribery occurring in higher education institutions can include: 

●    Procurement and tender exercises
●    Negotiating contracts and commissions
●    Failing to exercise adequate oversight of the operation of joint ventures and subsidiaries
●    Dealing with agents, associates, consultants, intermediaries and partners
●    Making and receiving donations or sponsorships

Areas where there is a risk of fraud occurring in higher education institutions can include:

●    Fraud involving cash or physical assets
●    Fraud involving confidential information
●    Procurement and payment fraud
●    Academic fraud including admissions, examinations, awards and research
●    Reference and qualification fraud

Further information and examples can be found within the relevant Anti-Bribery and Anti-Fraud Policies.

The University's Anti-Bribery Policy for all staff and associated persons.

The University's Anti-Fraud Policy for all staff and associated persons.

There is an e-learning module available to all staff.

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The procedure for reporting suspected cases of bribery or fraud can be found at the end of both the Anti-Bribery and Anti-Fraud Policies.

The University also has a Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblowing) Code of Practice.

Further information is available about the University's Protocol for investigating fraud and financial misconduct.


Staff and students are encouraged to raise initial queries or requests for guidance on matters relating to bribery or fraud with departmental administrators in the first instance. If you have a query that cannot be dealt with by your departmental administrator, then contact the Compliance Team in the Assurance Directorate by e-mail at:

The following links may provide useful additional information in considering bribery and fraud risk within the University:

Examples of potential instances of Bribery and Fraud can be found within the relevant Policy Documents. Further information is also available in the Bribery and Fraud FAQs.

Contact us

For further information contact the Risk and Resilience Team.





NEW e-learning module:

Anti Bribery & Corruption: Managing the Risk



Toolkit to support bribery risk assessment and due diligence on higher risk transactions

Bribery and Fraud Awareness Toolkit