Holding Power to Account: Accountability in Modern Democracies

Author(s): Richard Mulgan


Holding Power to Account provides a general overview of 'accountability', a key but contested concept in modern democratic governance. Accountability is identified with a core of external scrutiny and sanctions, in opposition to more expansive versions which also embrace 'responsibility' and 'responsiveness'. Richard Mulgan analyses both the United States and several 'Westminster' countries (the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand). Emphasis is on the public sector but accountability in the commercial and non-profit sectors is also discussed. Major topics include the contrast between accountability in the public and private sectors, the effects of public management reforms on accountability, accountability for collective actions, accountability in networks and federations and the limits of accountability.


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RICHARD MULGAN is Reader in Public Policy at the Australian National University and was formerly Professor of Classics and Political Studies at the University of Otago and Professor of Political Studies at the University of Auckland. He has written extensively on Greek political thought, New Zealand Politics and public sector management.

Preface Issues of Accountability Government Accountability: Political Mechanisms Government Accountability: Judicial Review, Audit and Other Mechanisms Government Accountability Compared with Accountability in the Private Sectors Government Accountability and New Public Management Reforms Locating Accountability: One or Many? Accountability and its Limits References

General Fields

  • : 9780333987681
  • : Palgrave Macmillan
  • : Palgrave Macmillan
  • : October 2003
  • : 222mm X 141mm X 20mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 264
  • : Hardback
  • : Richard Mulgan