Government Transparency: Reality or Mirage?
All citizens are entitled to access governmental information as, only if properly informed, that they can participate in politics. The right to information is enshrined in a number of international agreements, including Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The right of citizens to access public authorities’ information is called Freedom of information. This information plays a crucial role in informing the population so that they can make accurate political choices. The mere disposal of information is not enough, as much of public documents suffer from complex language and other technicalities that can prevent an informed use of the information. Thus, sites displaying information must be adapted in order to guarantee usability, functionality and accessibility; there must be different levels of information, as there are diverse groups of individuals with different skills. Such usability, functionality and accessibility require designing effective communications, paying attention to balancing the complexity that citizens can manage and the complexity that those responsible for the requested information are producing.
Alcaide-Muñoz, L., & Rodríguez Bolívar, M. (2015) Determining Factors of Transparency and Accountability in Local Governments: A Meta-Analytic Study, Lex Localis - Journal Of Local Self-Government, 13(2), pp. 129-160, https://doi.org/10.4335/13.2.129-160(2015)
Ananiev, J., & Poposka, Z. (2014) Participation and Anti-Discrimination Based Local Strategic Documents – Case of Macedonian Municipalities, Lex Localis - Journal Of Local Self-Government, 12(3), pp. 575-590, https://doi.org/10.4335/12.3.575-590(2014).
Anderson, T. B. (2009) E-government as an anti-corruption strategy, Information Economics and Policy, 21(3), pp. 201-210, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.infoecopol.2008.11.003.
Bannister, F. & Connolly, R. (2011) The trouble with transparency: A critical review of Openness in e-Government, Policy and Internet, 3(1), 1-30, https://doi.org/ 10.2202/1944-2866.1076.
Bertot, J. C.; Jaeger, P. T. & Grimes, J. M. (2010) Using ICTs to create a culture of transparency: E-government and social media as openness and anti-corruption tools for societies, Government Information Quarterly, 27(3), pp. 264-271, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2010.03.001.
Coglianese, C. (2009) The transparency President? Obama Administration and Open Government, Governance: an International Journal of Policy, Administration and Institutions, 22(4), pp. 529-544.
Cullier, D. & Piotrowski, S. J. (2009) Internet information-seeking and its relation to support for access to government records, Government Information Quarterly, 26(3), pp. 441-449, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2009.03.001.
Jaeger, P. T. & Bertot, J. C. (2010) Transparency and technological change: ensuring equal and sustained public access to government information, Government Information Quarterly, 27(4), pp. 371-376, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2010.05.003.
Harrison, T. M., & Sayogo, D. S. (2014) Transparency, participation, and accountability practices in open government: A comparative study, Government Information Quarterly, 31(4), pp. 513-525.
Kierkegaard, S. (2009) Open access to public documents – more secrecy, less transparency!, Computer Law & Security Review, 25(1), pp. 3-27, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clsr.2008.12.001.
Margetts, H. (2011) The internet and transparency, The Political Quarterly, 82(4), pp. 518-521.
Matheus, R.; Ribeiro, M. M.; Vaz, J. C. & Souza, C. A. (2010) Using internet to promote the transparency and fight corruption: Latin America Transparency Portals, ICEGOV2010, October 25-28, Beijing, China.
Meijer, A. J. (2012) Introduction to the special issue on government transparency, International Review of Administrative Sciences, 78(1), pp. 3-9.
Meijer, A. J.; Curtin, D. & Hillebrandt, M. (2012) Open Government: connecting vision and voice, International Review of Administrative Sciences, 78(1), pp. 10-29.
Piotrowski, S. & Van Ryzen, G. G. (2007) Citizen Attitudes toward transparency in local government, The American Review of Public Administration, 37(3), pp. 306-323.
Puron-Cid, G. (2013) Interdisciplinary application of structuration theory for e-government: A case study of an IT-enabled budget reform, Government Information Quarterly, 30(Supplement 1), pp. S46-S58, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2012.07.010.
Puron-Cid, G. (2014) Factors for a successful adoption of budgetary transparency innovations: A questionnaire report of an open government initiative in Mexico, Government Information Quarterly, 31(Supplement 1), pp. S49-S62, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2014.01.007.
Relly, J. E. & Sabharwal, M. (2009) Perceptions of transparency of government policymaking: A cross-national study, Government Information Quarterly, 26(1), pp. 148-157, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.giq.2008.04.002.
Roberts, A. (2006) Blacked-out: Government secrecy in the information age (New York: Cambridge University Press).
Solana, M. (2004) Transparency portals: delivering public financial information to citizens in Latin America, in Thinking Out Loud V – Innovative case studies on participatory instruments (World Bank: Washington).
Triães, J. (2011) Acesso à informação, Media e corrupção em Portugal, In: De Sousa, L. & Soares, D. (eds.) Transparência, Justiça e Liberdade. Em memória de Saldanha Sanches (Cascais: RCP Edições), p. 177.
It is a condition that the authors assign copyright or license the publication rights in their articles, including abstracts, to Institute for Local Self-Government Maribor. This enables us to ensure full copyright protection and to disseminate the article, and of course Journal, to the widest possible readership in print and electronic formats as appropriate. Authors retain many rights under the Institutes' right policies, which can be found at journal.lex-localis.press. Authors are themselves responsible for obtaining permission to reproduce copyright material from other sources.