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Transparency in Environmental Governance

Working Paper #114

Vivek Ramkumar, Elena Petkova

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This paper examines the structures that underpin disclosure-based environmental regulation by creating transparency in environmental governance. The authors argue that the term ‘transparency’ must be broadly defined to encompass three essential principles which must be present if citizens are to have a meaningful role in environmental governance. Access to information is the foundation of transparency—but it is not in all cases sufficient by itself to empower citizens to meaningfully impact environmental decisions. Access to information must be coupled with access to decision making processes and with access to justice. The paper also examines how transparency can be institutionalized as an essential component of environmental governance through the constant vigilance of intermediaries, like civil society groups.

About the Authors

Vivek Ramkumar
Manager of Open Budget Initiative
International Budget Partnership (IBP)

Elena Petkova