Monthly Archives: February 2012

Can you measure democracy by its freedom of information? Four hypothesis in search of answers

What is the relationship between FOIA’s age and its acceptance and use?  I have thought that there may be a resistance to FOIA in the UK for the following institutional and cultural reasons. If these hypotheses are true, then the … Continue reading

Posted in Government, local government, localism, transparency | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Homs, Syria: The modern day Melian Dialogue: The strong do as they will; the weak do as they must.

In Syria, we are seeing a lesson first taught in ancient Greece when Athens destroyed the city of Melos.  The Melian dialogue is well remembered for the powerful sentence that the strong do as they will; the weak do as … Continue reading

Posted in Government, statesmanship, strategy, war | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

If we are going to charge for FOIA requests we might as well start charging for complaints.

The current post legislative review of the Freedom of Information Act  which was shaped by the Government’s initial response to the review of the legislation sought written evidence on three areas.  Does the Freedom of Information Act work effectively? What … Continue reading

Posted in FOIA, Government, public sector, transparency | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Freedom of Information Act is the grain of sand in an oyster of records that creates pearls of transparency

An important actor has been missing from the recent discussions around the future of FOIA. The missing organisation is the National Archives. The National Archives did not give any written evidence to the post legislative scrutiny of Freedom of Information.  … Continue reading

Posted in FOIA, Government, public sector, transparency | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Does the UK have an ecology of transparency?

Seth Kreimer developed the term “ecology of transparency”. He was looking at a way to explain the interaction of actors and organisational contexts to explain transparency within the United States. Although his work is focused on the United States, I … Continue reading

Posted in censorship, FOIA, Government, privacy, transparency | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

Patton would have shot Haig: Thoughts on rehabilitating “The Butcher”

I was intrigued to hear the other morning on Radio4 that a lecture was to be given today about Field Marshall Haig. The lecturer (Professor Sheffield) suggested that Haig should be reconsidered given the harsh treatment from reassessment of his … Continue reading

Posted in Government, military, statesmanship, strategy, war | Tagged , , , , ,