The objective of this in-depth research based on literature review was to analyze the state of trust in government, with a specific geographical focus on Asia. A 50 to 60 page background paper on each of three sub-regions of Asia – East, South and Southeast Asia – analyzed the degree to which the respective region’s governance systems and practices are conducive to generating greater trust in government, while noting factors which have led to its decline. Special attention was given to identifying recent regional trends impacting trust in government, and to expounding lessons learned from the last Regional Forum on Reinventing Government in Asia.
The three finalized background papers served an important basis for the Workshop 1 (‘Restoring Trust in Government through Public Sector Innovations’) held during the 7th Global Forum in Vienna:
(1) ‘Building Trust in Government in Southeast Asia’ (by Ledivina V. Cariño);
(2) ‘Building Trust in the Government in South Asia’ (by Sajjad Naseer); and
(3) ‘Building Trust in Government in North and East Asia: China, Japan, Korea, Mongolia and Vietnam’ (by Pan Suk Kim).
Each paper has considered the relationship between trust and governance; the impact of the former on the ability of countries within the region to meet development objectives; major governance factors leading to a decline in trust; practical and contextual considerations for the sustainable strategy to build trust and improve governance; and key regional issues, trends and challenges.
The research outcomes of this particular project were presented and intensively discussed at the Regional Workshop on Building Trust in Government, held in the East-West Center, Hawaii, from 28 to 30 January 2008. The workshop drew participation of governance experts and stakeholders in the whole of Asia-Pacific region to disseminate and advance dialogue on the results of the completed research papers.