Capturing the social relevance of government transparency and accountability using a behavioral lens

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Gregory A. Porumbescu
Marcia Grimes
Stephan Grimmelikhuijsen


Transparency, Accountability, Good governance, Behavioral


The link between transparency and accountability is an often discussed feature of good governance. Despite a great deal of attention, this relationship remains poorly understood. We argue that the adoption of a behavioral lens to evaluate the impact of transparency on accountability offers new opportunities to discover novel mechanisms that contribute to a more systematic understanding of when and why increasing government transparency enhances accountability. Shedding light on such mechanisms not only promises to improve existing theory, but to also render transparency more meaningful to the applied world. To make this argument, we highlight findings from four articles that form the basis of this symposium issue and discuss avenues for further research.

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