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A price worth paying? Accountability, red tape and the regulation of affordable housing


Travers, M, A price worth paying? Accountability, red tape and the regulation of affordable housing, Australian Journal of Social Issues, 49, (4) pp. 403-422. ISSN 0157-6321 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Australian Social Policy Association

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DOI: doi:10.1002/j.1839-4655.2014.tb00321.x


© Australian Social Policy Association. Although it is not a pressing social problem in the same way as, for example, poverty, child abuse, or climate change, red tape causes frustrations for many working in public and private sector organisations, perhaps even more than for the ordinary citizen dealing with large government agencies. This paper will explore some dimensions of this contentious issue. It will consider the positive view of regulation advanced by regulation theorists, and some qualitative researchers associated with this tradition. Drawing on a qualitative research study concerning the regulation of affordable housing in Australia, it examines the nature of administrative burdens. It is suggested that three factors lead to the perception of red tape: whether regulation is seen as making a difference to services beyond accountability; whether the measures used are meaningful; and the resources available for compliance. Qualitative researchers can help those in government seeking to reduce administrative burdens by supplying realistic accounts that address the views and experiences of those subject to regulation.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Policy and administration
Research Field:Public administration
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Government and politics
Objective Field:Public services policy advice and analysis
UTAS Author:Travers, M (Associate Professor Max Travers)
ID Code:98175
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2015-02-04
Last Modified:2017-11-27

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