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Trust and Public Policy

How Better Governance Can Help Rebuild Public Trust

image of Trust and Public Policy

Trust plays a very tangible role in the effectiveness of government. Few perceptions are more palpable than that of trust or its absence. Governments ignore this at their peril. Yet, public trust has been eroding just when policy makers need it most, given persistent unemployment, rising inequality and a variety of global pressures. This report examines the influence of trust on policy making and explores some of the steps governments can take to strengthen public trust.

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Open government: How transparency and inclusiveness can reshape public trust

From law-making to budgeting and service delivery, efforts to embed greater openness send a clear signal of a government’s commitment to invest in trust while also improving the quality of the policy decisions made. This chapter discusses the links between openness and trust in public policy. The current move towards concepts of ‘open government’ and the even more ambitious ‘open state’ are positive signs that governments are trying to strengthen the dialogue with citizens, even if in some cases this openness can illuminate facts that can generate distrust. Guaranteeing freedom of the media is another sign of an approach to openness that helps to build trust.

English

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