The Uncertain Relationship between Open Data and Accountability: A Response to Yu and Robinson's 'The New Ambiguity of Open Government'

60 UCLA L. Rev. Disc. 200 (2013)

14 Pages Posted: 14 May 2013

See all articles by Tiago Peixoto

Tiago Peixoto

World Bank - Governance Global Practice

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

By looking at the nature of data that may be disclosed by governments, Harlan Yu and David Robinson provide an analytical framework that evinces the ambiguities underlying the term “open government data". While agreeing with their core analysis, I contend that the authors ignore the enabling conditions under which transparency may lead to accountability, notably the publicity and political agency conditions. I argue that the authors also overlook the role of participatory mechanisms as an essential element in unlocking the potential for open data to produce better governmental decisions and policies. Finally, I conduct an empirical analysis of the publicity and political agency conditions in countries that have launched open data efforts, highlighting the challenges associated with open data as a path to accountability.

Keywords: open government, open data, transparency, accountability, e-government, government 2.0, internet, executive branch, participatory democracy

Suggested Citation

Peixoto, Tiago, The Uncertain Relationship between Open Data and Accountability: A Response to Yu and Robinson's 'The New Ambiguity of Open Government' (2013). 60 UCLA L. Rev. Disc. 200 (2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2264369

Tiago Peixoto (Contact Author)

World Bank - Governance Global Practice ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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