Changes in the Public Accounts Committee of a Less Developed Democratic Country: A Field Study
24 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2016
Date Written: February 2016
This paper complements prior studies on the public accounts committees (PACs) by considering the notions of ‘agency’ and ‘structure’ of institutional theory in tandem in understanding the changes in structures and activities of the PAC of a less‐developed democratic country – Bangladesh. While prior studies examined ‘external’ institutional pressures on the development and operation of the PAC in various settings, the role of internal and external institutional agents in this context has not been their primary focus. Our empirical evidence from a qualitative field study indicates that over the past two decades, Bangladesh's PAC underwent significant changes to its internal governance structures and administrative processes. While these changes were indirectly driven by pressures from international donor agencies, PAC members and the national audit office played a key role as institutional agents in initiating and institutionalising the changes in PAC governance and operation.
Keywords: public accounts committee, institutional theory, less‐developed country, Bangladesh
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