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Bring citizens to the focus

An international symposium was hosted jointly by the Austrian Ombudsman Board and the Austrian Court of Audit in the framework of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the EU. The symposium on “Good Public Administration and Benefits for Citizens – the Role of Parliamentary Control Bodies” took place at the plenary hall of Austrian Parliament, the Vienna Hofburg, on 25 September 2018.

“How can parliamentary control bodies contribute to improving the citizens’ quality of life?“ This question was discussed by more than 110 delegates from 28 countries. The responses developed by the various institutions pointed in the same direction: towards more transparency, accountability and participation.

In her keynote speech, the President of the Austrian Court of Auditors, Margit Kraker, underlined: “In particular in the context of the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) it is important to strengthen effective, accountable and transparent institutions such as the SAIs and the Ombudsman's Offices”.


BRH-Präsident Kay Scheller, Volksanwältin Österreich Gertrude Brinek, RH-Präsidentin Österreich Margit Kraker, Präsident Nationalrat Österreich Wolfgang Sobotka

From left to right: Kay Scheller, President of the German SAI, Gertrude Brinek, Austrian Ombudswoman, Margit Kraker, President of the Austrian SAI, Wolfgang Sobotka, President of the Austrian National Council
Source: Austrian Parliamentary Directorate

In his speech, “Transparency, impact and sustainability through external audit”, Kay Scheller said: “SAIs play a key role for the state, citizens and society, as they look into many issues that matter to the citizens. In our turbulent and volatile times, SAIs can furnish a wealth of experiences, lessons learnt and sustainable solutions”.

He also emphasized the SAIs’ need to lead by example in order to remain credible as audit institutions. It was of key importance for SAIs to comply with the standards themselves that they applied to others. This also required self-assessment and openness to change.

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