Posts Tagged ‘decisional efficiency’

New article on the trade-off between transparency and efficiency

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

A new article in the Journal of European Public Policy takes a closer look at the purported trade-off between transparency and efficiency.

The tension between transparency and efficiency in the context of the Council of the European Union is as often invoked as it remains unclarified. In a new article in the Journal of European Public Policy, Stéphanie Novak (Ca’Foscari University Venice) and Maarten Hillebrandt (Bielefeld University) ask to what extent these two sources of legitimacy are really incompatible as is so routinely claimed, by exploring the premises and the coherence of the trade-off argument. They argue that the argument is unclear at its core because of the multiple meanings of efficiency. Upon a closer examination of the logical premises of the various claims postulated in defence of the presence of a trade-off, they further find that while the trade-off is in some instances more plausible than in others, transparency does not necessarily threaten efficiency and can sometimes even increase it. The presumed correlation between secrecy and efficiency, on which the trade-off is implicitly based, can also be questioned, not only on theoretical but also on empirical grounds. The authors conclude that, all in all, the trade-off argument forms a generally contingent and often questionable basis for limiting transparency.

The article can be accessed here.

Presentations on Council democracy & transparency

Monday, February 23rd, 2015

Early March sees two presentations on the interactions between transparency, democracy, and governance in the Council of the EU, in Lausanne and Brussels.

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On Wednesday 4 March, Open Government in the EU team member Maarten Hillebrandt will give a presentation at the University of Lausanne with the title “Babylonian speech confusion? Transparency’s Role in EU Council Democracy”. The presentation will take place in the context of the spring seminar series “Politique Suisse – enjeux et dilemmes”, convened by the Laboratoire d’analyse de la gouvernance et de l’action publique en Europe (LAGAPE), where Maarten is currently a visiting researcher. See here for more information.

On Thursday 5 March, dr. Stéphanie Novak (Université Catholique de Lille/EHESS Paris) will present work on the relation between transparency and decisional efficiency at the ESPOL Lille/ULB Brussels conference on “The quality of democracy within institutions and organisations”. Click on the flyer for more information.