On the learning curve – still room to improve the transparency of municipality-owned enterprises in Szeged


Budapest Institute researcher Petra Reszkető presented our research results on the transparency of municipality owned enterprises in Szeged at the Academic Conference on Open Government on 18 November in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

In partnership with the TI Hungary we investigated the transparency of publicy owned local companies in Szeged, the regional center of South-Eastern Hungary in 2016 and 2017. Through interviews and mapping websites we evaluated the transparency and public information disclosure practices of companies in which the city of Szeged is a majority shareholder. 

Our main finding is that there is only small difference between local and national public companies in terms of transparency. While the best local companies are just as transparent as the top national companies, the least transparent local companies are better than the worst national companies w.r.t. to public disclosure. In general, companies publish basic company information such as their contact information, data on management and the supervisory board, but they often fail to disclose contracts and information on public procurement procedures. There is a wide range of available solutions to increase transparency that have low costs and could be implemented in the short term. We have heavily relied on national and international good practices while drafting our policy recommendations for the local companies and the local authority in Szeged.

You can read our research results here.

Presentation: On the learning curve - Transparency of Municipality-Owned Enterprises