"Transparency is one of the most widely touted concepts of our age. We live in an era of ever greater openness and disclosure of information, even as a push for more transparency is not discernible to the same extent everywhere and in all social settings. The driving force of this growing call for transparency is an unwavering belief in its potential to foster more accountable, democratic and effective decision - making and action at different levels and across public and private domains. While the transparency turn is being ever more closely scrutinized in policy domains such as diplomacy, national security, human rights, or economic relations, the relationship between transparency and sustainability remains strikingly obscure. Yet even in this realm, there remains an assumption that transparency is transformative, i.e. that greater openness and deliberative acts of information disclosure can empower those previously uninformed about the sites and sources of environmental gains or losses, and can transform pr actices and institutions towards sustainability. Yet does transparency live up to its sustainability promise? Does it enhance the accountability of those perpetuating environmental harm and foster improved environmental outcomes? Such questions are theoret ically and empirically under-examined. This conference will address such questions for a wide array of environmental challenges and sectors."

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