Dictionary of Arguments

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Morozov I 84
Audits/Auditing/Information Society/Michael Power/Morozov: Power thesis: (...) two worrying consequences of auditing - not only in the context of companies but also of public institutions - both of which are likely to go hand in hand with the pursuit of greater transparency. (1) The first one, called "decoupling" by Power, can be stored under the "Perversity" part of Albert Hirschman's "Perversity-futility-jeopardy" triad (2) . Think of politicians or businessmen who, in the face of increasing pressure to document everything they say, return to their secret borders and choose to communicate orally to avoid anything being put on paper.
In such a case, the demand for greater transparency could be less effective. Or they do the opposite and pursue an answer known as "snowing", generating as much data of such poor quality that they make it virtually impossible to understand what is really going on. In this way, the actual performance is decoupled from the artificial performance recorded by audits and transparency systems. These may give us the illusion of an objective and unproblematic "double-click" access to the "truth", but in reality they often provide their own incentives to circumvent transparency.


1. Michael Power, The Audit Society: Rituals of Verification (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999).
2. Albert O. Hirschman, The Rhetoric of Reaction: Perversity, Futility, Jeopardy (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1991).


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

EconPower I
Michael Power
The Audit Society: Rituals of Verification New York 1999

Morozov I
Evgeny Morozov
To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism New York 2014


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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2018-12-17
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