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Does More Transparency Go Along With Better Governance?

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  • ROUMEEN ISLAM

Abstract

This paper explores the link between information flows and governance. It develops a new indicator, the transparency index, which measures the frequency with which governments update economic data that they make available to the public. The paper also uses the existence of a Freedom of Information Act and the length of time for which it has been in existence as an indicator reflecting the overall legislative environment for transparency. Measures of the type developed in this paper have hitherto not been used in the cross-country literature on governance and growth. Cross-country regression estimation shows that countries with better information flows as measured by these indices also govern better. Copyright 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Roumeen Islam, 2006. "Does More Transparency Go Along With Better Governance?," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(2), pages 121-167, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecopol:v:18:y:2006:i:2:p:121-167
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Bruce C. Greenwald & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1993. "Financial Market Imperfections and Business Cycles," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(1), pages 77-114.
    2. Shang-Jin Wei, 2000. "Natural openness and good government," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2411, The World Bank.
    3. Daniel Kaufmann & Aart Kraay & Massimo Mastruzzi, 2004. "Governance Matters III: Governance Indicators for 1996, 1998, 2000, and 2002," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 18(2), pages 253-287.
    4. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James & Thaicharoen, Yunyong, 2003. "Institutional causes, macroeconomic symptoms: volatility, crises and growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 49-123, January.
    5. David E. M. Sappington & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1987. "Privatization, information and incentives," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(4), pages 567-585.
    6. World Bank, 2002. "The Right to Tell : The Role of Mass Media in Economic Development," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15212, July.
    7. Bruce Greenwald & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1987. "Money, Imperfect Information and Economic Fluctuations," NBER Working Papers 2188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Dyck, Alexander & Zingales, Luigi, 2002. "The Corporate Governance Role of the Media," CEPR Discussion Papers 3630, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mara Andreea SÎNTEJUDEANU & Teodora Viorica FARCAS & Adriana TIRON TUDOR, 2014. "Public Sector Transparency:A Conceptual Dissection," SEA - Practical Application of Science, Fundația Română pentru Inteligența Afacerii, Editorial Department, issue 4, pages 365-372, July.
    2. Williams, Andrew, 2011. "Shining a Light on the Resource Curse: An Empirical Analysis of the Relationship Between Natural Resources, Transparency, and Economic Growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 490-505, April.
    3. repec:spr:weltar:v:153:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10290-017-0288-y is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Yamamura, Eiji, 2011. "Groups and information disclosure: Olson and Putnam Hypotheses," MPRA Paper 34628, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Williams, Andrew, 2015. "A global index of information transparency and accountability," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 804-824.
    6. Langbein, Laura & Knack, Stephen, 2008. "The worldwide governance indicators and tautology : causally related separable concepts, indicators of a common cause, or both ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4669, The World Bank.
    7. Williams, Andrew, 2009. "On the release of information by governments: Causes and consequences," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 124-138, May.
    8. Eiji Yamamura, 2015. "Transparency and Views Regarding Nuclear Energy Before and After the Fukushima Accident: Evidence on Micro-Data," Pacific Economic Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(5), pages 761-777, December.
    9. Andrew Williams, 2014. "The effect of transparency on output volatility," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 101-129, May.
    10. Yamamura, Eiji, 2011. "Effect of transparency on changing views regarding nuclear energy before and after Fukushima accident," MPRA Paper 34346, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Geginat, Carolin & Saltane, Valentina, 2014. "Transparent government and business regulation :"open for business?"," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7132, The World Bank.
    12. Ward, Hugh & Dorussen, Han, 2015. "Public Information and Performance: The Role of Spatial Dependence in the Worldwide Governance Indicators among African Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 253-263.
    13. repec:spr:scient:v:113:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-017-2541-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Yamamura, Eiji, 2012. "Effects of groups and government size on information disclosure," MPRA Paper 36141, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Ling, Cristina & Roberts, Dawn, 2014. "Evidence of development impact from institutional change : a review of the evidence on open budgeting," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6968, The World Bank.
    16. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:4:p:631-:d:96011 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Geginat, Carolin & Saltane, Valentina, 2016. "“Open for Business?” —Transparent government and business regulation," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 1-21.
    18. Yamamura, Eiji, 2011. "Effect of transparency on changing views regarding nuclear energy before and after Japan’s 2011 natural disasters: A cross-country analysis," MPRA Paper 30954, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Christian Weyand, 2013. "Why Political Elites Support Governmental Transparency. Self-Interest, Anticipation of Voters' Preferences or Socialization?," Cologne Graduate School Working Paper Series 04-02, Cologne Graduate School in Management, Economics and Social Sciences.

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