Transparency: The Key to Better Governance?

Hardcover | September 7, 2006

EditorChristopher Hood, David Heald

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'Transparency' is widely canvassed as a key to better governance, increasing trust in public-office holders. But transparency is more often preached than practised, more often referred to than defined, and more often advocated than critically analysed. This volume exposes this fashionabledoctrine to critical scrutiny from a range of disciplinary perspectives, including political science, philosophy and economics. The volume traces the history of transparency as a doctrine of good governance and social organization, and identifies its different forms; it assesses the benefits and drawbacks of measures to enhance various forms of transparency; and examines how institutions respond to measures intended toincrease transparency, and with what consequences. Transparency is shown not to be a new doctrine. It can come into conflict with other doctrines of good governance, and there are some important exceptions to Jeremy Bentham's famous dictum that 'the more closely we are watched, the better we behave'. And instead of heralding a new culture ofopenness in government, measures to improve transparency tend to lead to tighter and more centralised management of information.

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'Transparency' is widely canvassed as a key to better governance, increasing trust in public-office holders. But transparency is more often preached than practised, more often referred to than defined, and more often advocated than critically analysed. This volume exposes this fashionabledoctrine to critical scrutiny from a range of di...

Christopher Hood is at Gladstone Professor of Government, University of Oxford; Fellow of the British Academy. David Heald is at Professor of Financial Management, University of Sheffield.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:246 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.79 inPublished:September 7, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0197263836

ISBN - 13:9780197263839

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Table of Contents

Christopher Hood: Transparency in Historical PerspectiveDavid Heald: Varieties of TransparencyPatrick Birkinshaw: Transparency as a Human RightDavid Heald: Transparency as an Instrumental ValueOnora O'Neill: Transparency and the Ethics of CommunicationAndrea Prat: The More Closely We Are Watched, the Better We Behave?Alasdair Roberts: Dashed Expectations: Governmental Adaptation to Transparency RulesAndrew McDonald: What Hope Freedom of Information in th UKJames Savage: Member State Bedgetary Transparency in the Economic and Monetary UnionDavid Stasavage: Does Transparency Make a Difference? The Example of European Council of MinistersJean Camp: Varieties of Software and their Implications for Effective Democratic GovernmentHelen Margetts: Transparency and Digital GovernmentChristopher Hood: Conclusion