Constraining Governments: New Indices of Vertical, Horizontal and Diagonal Accountability

72 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2017

See all articles by Anna Lührmann

Anna Lührmann

Göteborg University - Department of Political Science

Kyle L. Marquardt

V-Dem Institute, University of Gothenburg

Valeriya Mechkova

Göteborg University - V-Dem Institute

Date Written: April 2017

Abstract

Accountability - constraints on the government’s use of political power - is one of the cornerstones of good governance. However, conceptual stretching and a lack of reliable measures have limited cross-national research and comparisons regarding the role of both accountability writ large and its different sub-types. To address this research gap, we use the V-Dem dataset and Bayesian statistical models to develop new ways to conceptualize and measure accountability and its core dimensions. We provide indices capturing the extent to which governments are accountable to citizens (vertical accountability), other state institutions (horizontal accountability) and the media and civil society (diagonal accountability), as well as an aggregate index that incorporates the three sub-types. These indices cover virtually all countries from 1900 to today. We demonstrate the validity of our new measures by analyzing trends from key countries, as well as by demonstrating that the measures are positively related to development outcomes such as health and education.

Suggested Citation

Lührmann, Anna and Marquardt, Kyle L. and Mechkova, Valeriya, Constraining Governments: New Indices of Vertical, Horizontal and Diagonal Accountability (April 2017). V-Dem Working Paper 2017:46. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2956464 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2956464

Anna Lührmann (Contact Author)

Göteborg University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Box 711
Göteborg, S-405 30
Sweden

Kyle L. Marquardt

V-Dem Institute, University of Gothenburg ( email )

Department of Political Science
Sprängkullsgatan 19, PO 711
Gothenburg, SE 40530
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://v-dem.net

Valeriya Mechkova

Göteborg University - V-Dem Institute ( email )

Sweden

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