Governance: The traditions (norms, values, culture, language) and institutions (formal structures, organizations, practices) that a community or nation uses to make decisions and accomplish its goals. At the heart of the concept of government is the creation of effective, accountable and legitimate systems and processes where citizens can articulate their interests, exercise their rights and responsibilities and reconcile their differences.1 

Self-determination: “Philosophically speaking, self-determination designates the possibility for an individual to freely choose his or her behaviour and opinions, that is, free from any outside pressure. In international law, this term is associated with the principle that peoples have the right to govern themselves, that is, to freely choose their State and form of government, to not be compelled to give way or make concessions against their will, and to have the power to secede if needed.” 2 [translation] 

Authority: “Authority is the power to command and be obeyed. It involves notions of legitimacy, command and obedience, of another power that imposes authority. The types of legitimacy can vary, and can be expressed through a relationship of force or one of competence.” 3

Control: “Control is a procedure put in place to ensure the reliability of a record, the proper functioning of a structure, service or system.” 4

Accountability: “Accountability is an obligation imposed on a person, to whom a responsibility was delegated, to show proof of the way that responsibility was fulfilled. It consists in reporting on the use of powers and resources attributed to a person or organizational entity to achieve set objectives.”5. »

Reporting: “Reporting is a function based on the obligation to show proof, to examine such proof and assume the relevant responsibility for both the results obtained in light of the established expectations and the means employed to that end.” 6

Responsibility: “The obligation of an office holder to acquit himself or herself of a task or a category of tasks and to report on this activity to his or her superior or competent authority, according to predetermined criteria that he or she has consented to abide by.” 7

Transparency: “The quality of an organization that is open about its operations, practices, intentions, objectives and results.” 8

1 Adaptation d’une définition du Centre national pour la gouvernance des Premières Nations. La définition originale est tirée de : National Centre for First Nations Governance, Governance Best Practices Report, 2009, 48 p.   

2 E. Féron, « Autodétermination », Encyclopædia Universalis, [s.d.]. Accessible en ligne :

3 Wikipédia, Autorité, 2015. Accessible en ligne :

4 M.-S. Tremblay, « Contrôle », 2012; dans L. Côté et J.-F. Savard (dir.), Le Dictionnaire encyclopédique de l'administration publique. Accessible en ligne :

5 J. I. Gow, « Imputabilité », 2012; dans L. Côté et J.-F. Savard (dir.), Le Dictionnaire encyclopédique de l'administration publique. Accessible en ligne :

6 M. Ferguson, Renforcer la reddition de comptes, la transparence et la gouvernance, 2013, 14 p.

7 .Secrétariat du Conseil du trésor, Direction de la mise en œuvre de la Loi sur l’administration publique, Glossaire des termes usuels en mesure de performance et en évaluation, 2013, 26 p.

8 Services Québec, Le Thésaurus de l’activité gouvernementale, 2015. Accessible en ligne :