ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Strengthening Public Accountability-Can Exit and Voice Help

Can 'Exit' and 'Voice' Help? Samuel Paul This paper presents a theoretical framework for analysing the problem of government's accountability with special reference to public services. An important proposition derived from this framework is that effective public accountability can be sustained only when government's 'hierarchical control' over public service providers is reinforced by the public's willingness and ability to 'exit' (the presence of competition) or to exert pressure on the providers to perform (the use of 'voice'). The paper also examines the conditions under which the use of exit and voice is likely to be efficient and offers a menu of options to strengthen public accountability.

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