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    Transparency and trust in the UK and Netherlands

    Worthy, Benjamin and Grimmelikhuijsen, S. (2012) Transparency and trust in the UK and Netherlands. In: The Transatlantic Conference on Transparency Research, 2012, Utrecht University, Utrecht, Netherlands.

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    The link between transparency and trust is often oversimplified by both supporters and critics of transparency laws. Optimists believe that transparency can bring increased public trust in government by reducing secrecy and increasing understanding. Pessimists argue that ‘abuse’ or ‘distrustful’ use of FOI, combined with the negative headlines and scandal it can bring, ultimately reduces public trust. This paper argues that the link between transparency and trust is nuanced a sit is influenced by a range of macro and micro influences. Looking at research in the UK and Netherlands it argues that there are two forces that can vary and complicate these factors and link between the two concepts: political culture and institutions. The two countries display very different political cultures, the UK distrustful and adversarial and the Netherlands more consensual. This means FOI is used and works differently. Moreover, within both countries, different institutions experience the effect of transparency on trust differently. The culture, leadership and use of FOI towards different bodies and levels of government mean it has a very varied set of effects on trust.


    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Birkbeck Centre for British Political Life
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2013 14:29
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:08


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