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Title: A study of the constitutional role of the Thai Ombudsman
Author: Sudhankitra, Jiraporn
ISNI:       0000 0004 5363 762X
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2015
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The Thai Ombudsman was initially established to handle complaints of grievances from individuals in dealing with government bodies. Subsequently, the Ombudsman was empowered with additional mandates and powers. To understand the viability of this new arrangement, this thesis examines the legislative framework of the Thai Ombudsman using existing well-accepted standards in ombudsman design and explores the actual practice of the Thai Ombudsman. The empirical findings of this thesis indicate that despite some weaknesses and shortcomings, the Thai Ombudsman has served well its main constitutional objectives in redressing administrative grievances and improving administration. Most of its institutional features meet standard practice. However, the thesis argues that some of the new functions do not fit easily into the jurisdiction of the Office because they call for different expertise and resources, attributes that the Ombudsman is not suitably designed for or does not sufficiently possess. Further, the new functions require the Ombudsman to operate in a manner which risks compromising its core values. Thus, rather than strengthening the position of the office, the additional functions weaken the institution, damaging its effectiveness and credibility. This thesis illustrates these points by testing the Thai Ombudsman's experience within an analytical framework based upon theorising on the ombudsman institution and the leading guidelines on the ombudsman available in the professional and academic literature. Ultimately, the thesis argues for the reform of the Thai Ombudsman scheme, including recommending the removal of unsuitable functions. The thesis also identifies weaknesses in the operation and legislative framework of the Thai Ombudsman Office which should be addressed by policy makers, so that it can provide the maximum benefit to the system of government administration and to the individual citizens. Finally, the thesis uses the findings with regard to the Thai Ombudsman to construct a theoretical template of the factors that should be used to determine whether or not an ombudsman scheme should be used to deliver additional functions beyond those of the core ombudsman model.
Supervisor: Kirkham, Richard ; Hervey, Tammy Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available