The Limits of Transparency
Public Administration Review, Vol. 74, No. 6, pp. 687-88, 2014
2 Pages Posted: 19 Feb 2015 Last revised: 3 Mar 2016
Date Written: November 5, 2014
Transparency, defined as the principle of enabling the public to gain information about the operations and structures of a given entity, has become increasingly popular in recent decades due to ideological and political developments. However, transparency is not a viable substitute for regulation. Regulation is needed to ensure that the information disclosed through transparency is accurate and accessible. Moreover, transparency's effectiveness in achieving accountability requires conditions of civic and democratic engagement that do not hold in practice. When there are compelling reasons to advance a particular public good, transparency can help regulation but cannot replace it.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation