Home > 2.Methodology > Hypothesis about the effect of formal transparency measurements, including FOI legislations

Hypothesis about the effect of formal transparency measurements, including FOI legislations

Transparency has to be attained through institutional arrangements. According to the attitudes presented in scholarship towards the relation between transparency measurements, such as FOI legislation, and the transparency as the aims of these measures, there are hypothesis that could be divided into 2 positions, 4 groups (Hood and Heald 2006).

The hypothesis in positive position claims that formal measurements, especially FOI legislations, are conventionally claimed as a means of producing new culture of openness in government organization and increasing public trust in government”. (McDonald 2006)

There are also negative hypothesis. The futility thesis thinks formal policy measurement and legal norms are nugatory to situation of transparency (Roberts 2006). They could be ignored. Bureaucrats can make compensating adjustments to make them ineffective. Or they may only serve to circumvent the professed interest of FOI laws. The jeopardy thesis contents that, while achieving some objectives, transparency norms will undermine other important values and goals, at least in some circumstances, such as reducing trust and integrity within organizations, or increasing likelihood of deadlock and a lower quality of deliberative debate (Stasavage 2006). The perversity thesis feels that policy measures such as transparency law can achieve the very opposite of their intended goals and not only merely null effects or undesired side-effects. It would mean that citizens would end up knowing less rather than more as a result of the introduction of transparent provisions[1] .


[1] The legislation of Zimbabwe, ostensibly about freedom of information, actually aims at reducing freedom of press.

Biblio:

Hood, C., D. Heald, et al., Eds. (2006). Transparency : the key to better governance? Oxford ; New York, Published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press

McDonald, A. (2006). What hope for freedom of information in the UK? Transparency : the key to better governance? C. Hood and D. Heald. Oxford ; New York, Published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press

Roberts, A. (2006). Blacked out: Government secrecy in the information age. New York, Cambridge University Press

Stasavage, D. (2006). Does transparency make a difference? The example of the European Council of Ministers. Transparency : the key to better governance? C. Hood and D. Heald. Oxford ; New York, Published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press

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