Archive for the Access to Information Category

Open information is a drill for democracy – China Media Project

Posted in Access to Information on September 4, 2011 by thomas4infosoc

Open information is a drill for democracy – China Media Project.

An editorial in today’s People’s Daily again deals with the issue of open government information (OGI), arguing that while OGI faces many challenges in China, it is the way forward for both the public and the Party


Report on Access to Environmental Information in China

Posted in Access to Information on January 6, 2011 by thomas4infosoc

ARTICLE 19 and the Centre for Legal Assistance to Pollution Victims (CLAPV) at the China University of Political Science and Law launched a new report today entitled Access to Environmental Information in China: Evaluation of Local Compliance. The report outlines the findings of an evaluation on access to environmental information in seven cities across China.

Report in English:

Report in Chinese:

Getting Corruption Right by Jagdish Bhagwati – Project Syndicate

Posted in Access to Information, Business and Economics, etctetera, News Clip on December 31, 2010 by thomas4infosoc

Interesting idea from one of the world’s brightest development economists: Indian-style “rent-creating” corruption (designing the system so as to create scarcity rents, then reaping and distributing them) is expensive and corrosive of growth. China-style, on the other hand, he calls “profit-sharing”, “whereby family members are given a stake in the enterprise so that their earnings increase as profits increase – a type of corruption that promotes growth.”

Full text:

Getting Corruption Right by Jagdish Bhagwati – Project Syndicate.

And related news: China State Council Information Office publishes White Paper on Corruption. Whether indeed over 83.8% people belie that corruption is “under control” to one degree or another is open for discussion. summary here.

President Jimmy Carter on Access to Government Information in China

Posted in Access to Information on September 6, 2010 by thomas4infosoc

Today, September 6, President Jimmy Carter visited Beijing’s Tsinghua University Law School and gave a speech on “Access to Government Information”. Hosted by the Dean of the Tsinghua Law School, the speech and the following Q&A session stressed the importance of government transparency in the relationship between citizens and state. Taking the implementation of the relatively new (2008) Chinese Access to Government Information Ordinance as a starting point, Carter recalled his time in the White House, with a relatively new Freedom of Information Act being ignored and thwarted by administration trying to build their parallel universes, seeking to hide away the facts about the Vietnam War, citizne trust damaged by the Watergate scandal. Carter stressed that laws and regulations are empty without the willingness of the governments to implement them properly and make transparecy come alive, and announced that the Carter Center will be offering support in gathering experience and developing good practice models, cooperating with the Chinese government and in cooperation with academic partners.

The audience to this event was unfortunately very limited, and I did not see any media representatives, but I take it as a good sign that Carter uses his excellent relations to the Chinese government and his popularity among the American and the Chinese citizens to push the topic of government transparency. There will be more activities by the Carter Center, soon to be announced here and at the Center’s website: and the Center’s Chinese Resouces Website for transparency issues:

New government transparency rules in effect

Posted in Access to Information, News Clip on July 24, 2010 by thomas4infosoc

As seen on China Daily:

A regulation that took effect Sunday extends the list declarable assets for officials and introduces dismissal as the maximum penalty for failing to report assets honestly and promptly.

The regulation adds six more items to the list of declarable assets issued in 2006, bringing the total to 14. The new items include incomes from sources like lecturing, painting and calligraphy; homes owned by spouses and children; and equities and investments owned by officials, their spouses and children.