Chapter 3 Accountability and transparency: cornerstones of civil society governance
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Transparency and accountability are major governance responsibilities for civil society organizations (CSOs). This chapter starts with a literature-based overview of seven types of accountability that are relevant for the unique nature of CSOs and their relationships with various stakeholders. Subsequently, transparency and accountability are discussed in relation to strategic governance approaches: instrumental, normative, proactive and reactive. The final section identifies ‘good’ governance design features for CSOs and offers insights on how these features relate to the accountability types and the strategic governance approaches outlined in the first two sections. In this three-step clarification of how governance relates with transparency and accountability for CSOs, the chapter seeks to (1) clarify transparency and accountability for the specific CSO context, (2) provide insight into various approaches to deal with the transparency and accountability responsibilities that CSOs have and (3) identify governance design features that relate to the CSO accountability types and strategic approaches.

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