Towards Transparency in Finance and Governance

30 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2001

See all articles by Tara Vishwanath

Tara Vishwanath

World Bank - Economic Development Institute

Daniel Kaufmann

Results for Development; The University of the Philippines Diliman; The Brookings Institution

Date Written: September 1999


The study of transparency is increasingly a more topical, broadly relevant, but also more under-researched enterprise. The Asian financial crisis has highlighted not only the welfare consequences of financial sector transparency, sparking a series of yet unresolved debates, but has also linked this relatively narrow problem to the broader context of transparency in governance. Its significance has broadened geographically as well as across different sectors. It has been observed that curtailment of transparency, often on scanty pretexts, is commonplace even in the highly developed countries. This suggests a broad and possibly radical reform agenda. Departing from the urgency of these observations, this paper reviews the existing literature on transparency in finance and governance, indicates remaining knowledge gaps, and offers some hypothesis on the mutual significance of the two issues.

Keywords: financial liberalization, transparency, corruption, governance, banking crisis, asymmetric information, local investors, shocks, bad loans, emerging markets

JEL Classification: E6, F02, F30, F4, G00, G14, G15, G18, G38, H0

Suggested Citation

Vishwanath, Tara and Kaufmann, Daniel, Towards Transparency in Finance and Governance (September 1999). Available at SSRN: or

Tara Vishwanath

World Bank - Economic Development Institute ( email )

1818 H Street
Washington, DC 20433
United States
202-473-1152 (Phone)

Daniel Kaufmann (Contact Author)

Results for Development ( email )

1875 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 1210
Washington, DC 20009
United States

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The University of the Philippines Diliman ( email )


The Brookings Institution ( email )

1775 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States


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