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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

Book of the Month

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Goode on Commercial Law

Edited by: Ewan McKendrick
Price: £170.00

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Transparency: The Key to Better Governance

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Edited by: Christopher Hood, David Heald

ISBN13: 9780197263839
ISBN: 0197263836
Published: July 2006
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £50.00

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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 fashionable doctrine 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 to increase 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 of openness in government, measures to improve transparency tend to lead to tighter and more centralised management of information.

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Transparency in Historical Perspective , Christopher Hood
Varieties of Transparency , David Heald
Transparency as a Human Right , Patrick Birkinshaw
Transparency as an Instrumental Value , David Heald
Transparency and the Ethics of Communication , Onora O'Neill
The More Closely We Are Watched, the Better We Behave? , Andrea Prat
Dashed Expectations: Governmental Adaptation to Transparency Rules , Alasdair Roberts
What Hope Freedom of Information in th UK , Andrew McDonald
Member State Bedgetary Transparency in the Economic and Monetary Union , James Savage
Does Transparency Make a Difference? The Example of European Council of Ministers , David Stasavage
Varieties of Software and their Implications for Effective Democratic Government , Jean Camp
Transparency and Digital Government , Helen Margetts
Conclusion , Christopher Hood ;