ESARBICA Journal: Journal of the Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Branch of the International Council on Archives

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Good government and good governance: record keeping in a contested arena

Alistair G Tough


This article addresses the challenges that arise when record keeping systems are advocated as a necessary under-pinning for good government and good governance. The relationship between record keeping and accountability is analysed and contextualised in relation to transparency and Freedom of Information legislation. The importance of capturing oral communication is referred to. The barriers to progress that can arise where official information technology systems are misused for personal and recreational purposes are recognised and possible solutions discussed. At the outset an historical analysis of the development of record keeping systems is offered. This article is based both on the author’s experience as an archivist and records manager and on academic research – much of it carried out in archives.

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