n Journal of Public Administration - Citizens' knowledge and perspectives on social accountability information access and distribution in Grahamstown

Volume 53 Number 4
  • ISSN : 0036-0767


The study aimed to assess activists' understanding of the public resources management systems and explore their perspectives on social accountability information accessibility and distribution. Social accountability pertains to the practice of citizens holding the government accountable, which requires information for effective engagement. The study was conducted in Grahamstown, South Africa, a town plagued by the legacy of apartheid, and that, despite being a centre of educational excellence, is rife with poor service delivery, among other social ills. Through the activism research theory lens, the study utilised the participatory action research methodology. Thirty informants between 18 and 69 years of age, across gender and race were interviewed, using questionnaires. The study found that the informants receive information predominantly via word of mouth, but prefer radio. They had limited knowledge regarding the public resources management system and required more information of the roles of government officials and the management of public resources.

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