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Brazil, Corruption, and the 2016 Olympics: Help Eight Law Students Find Answers.

Hello, my name is Carter Nichols and I am one of eight law students who want to research corruption surrounding the 2016 Olympics – but I need your help! In March, our group will be traveling to Brazil to interview government officials, politicians, business leaders, and advocacy groups in an effort to understand and analyze corruption in Brazil. In order to make this leg of the research possible, my classmates and I need to raise money to fund our trip. I have included a link our fundraising page below, but would first like to tell you a little about of project:

Our group, in conjunction with Dr. Andy Spalding, undertook the task of researching corruption in Brazil with an eye towards the 2016 Olympic games last year. Like many, we had all seen the numerous reports of corruption that surrounded the Sochi winter games and 2014 World Cup. However, what we didn’t see were any concrete explanations or proof in these reports.

While corruption remains a hot button issue in Brazil and around the world, any solutions to the perceived problem evade the public discussion. Accordingly, we have set out to find the cause of corruption, or lack thereof, through the lens of the 2016 Olympics. Our desired result is a comprehensive guide that would help countries who host these large international events to combat corruption from the outset – increasing both efficiency and transparency.

We believe that the best way to find the answers is to be on the ground collecting the data ourselves. However, getting from Richmond, Virginia to Sao Paulo, Brazil is a long and expensive journey. We are asking for your help because we believe that, like us, you want answers and results that will help stamp out corruption. If you could please donate $25, $10, $5, or even $1 it would go a long way towards making this research possible. If you would like to donate, you can visit our fundraising page here ( Again, we would greatly appreciate your help making this research possible!


Carter Nichols is a second-year student at the University of Richmond School of Law where he is a member of Law Review and the Moot Court Board. He has co-authored research on anti-corruption and the World Cup in Brazil.

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  1. Dear Carter,

    Please, bear in mind that the whole Olympics project is being carried out from Rio de Janeiro, and not from São Paulo. Just make sure you fly there to discuss this topic.

    Have a great flight here,


  2. Hello Mr Nichols!

    I wish you and your team best luck in researching corruption in Brazil. However, i advice you to plan your research realistically, as it is a difficult task to obtain "concrete explanations and proof" of corruption from interviews of government officials.

    If you need any advice from the team who made this project (, feel free to contact me.

    Nikita Kulachenkov

  3. That is humorous. How exactly will you establish, 'on the ground', that this and that stadium or other facility was built through a rigged tender by a company whose anonymous panama-registered shareholders are in cahoots with government officials, for the price that was a multiple of what it could have been?

    Trust me, there is enough awareness of the corruption problems in all of these countries, whether its Brazil, or Russia or any other third world country. People aren't that stupid, most of corruption isn't that easy to hide, on contrary most of it is hugely evident. And most of these countries have relatively free press some with good investigative journalists. The problem is out there, in the open. Its only that almost all of these countries are governed by crooks and kleptomaniacs, top to bottom, each having their own corrupt interests thus not too willing to fight corruption. What makes it interesting is that many of the most corrupt third world countries are formally democracies, where the crooks have their mandates validated every few years by population most of which knows about the corruption yet votes for them term after term, often because there are only bad choices on the ballot, i.e. no decent people running at all. Corruption in most of these countries is a part culture the same way local cuisine is.

    Sorry to break it to you kidos, but your trip will be as pointless as this rant.

  4. Hi Carter!
    As a public attorney for the city of São Paulo, I've been working on anticorruption for 22 years. Trust me, causes of corruption in Brazil or elsewhere in the world, as well as anticorruption strategies, are far more complex than you can learn by on ground interviews. Anyhow, I would be pleased to help you and your colleagues in your research. I suggest you begin by reading 'Os Donos do Poder: Formação do Patronato Político Brasileiro" by Raymundo Faoro, which will give you a great background on Brazilian History and Politics. Good luck!

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