The effectiveness of the Public Accounts Committee in Northern Ireland

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is considered to be one of the most effective and important parliamentary committees. Devolution in the late 1990s resulted in the establishment of separate PACs in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. This paper examines the effectiveness of the Northern Ireland PAC by considering success factors identified in the literature, using primary and secondary data. Given the consociational nature of devolved government in Northern Ireland and the potential for sectarian politics, the PAC has adopted an independent and non-partisan approach. Weaknesses identified in the study include the tendency to dwell on detail, and its over-reliance on the Northern Ireland Audit Office. However, despite these weaknesses the committee has proven to be effective in the conduct of its work.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-408
JournalPublic Money and Management
Issue number6
Early online date26 Aug 2015
Publication statusPublished online - 26 Aug 2015


  • Public audit
  • Northern Ireland
  • value for money
  • devolution
  • parliamentary committees


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