ac·​count·​abil·​i·​ty | \ə-ˌkau̇n-tə-ˈbi-lə-tē \

Definition of accountability 

: the quality or state of being accountable especially : an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one's actions public officials lacking accountability

Examples of accountability in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But legislation that attempt to create oversight and accountability of the day-to-day operations of fertility clinics are rare. Ariana Eunjung Cha, Washington Post, "Embryo storage bill seeks oversight of fertility centers and penalties for those that violate safeguards," 5 July 2018 Critics call it a devil’s bargain that forced a school to trade academic oversight and accountability for dollars that mostly go to a private corporation. NBC News, "A rural school turns to digital education. Is it a savior or devil's bargain?," 28 May 2018 The warnings of lax oversight and little accountability proved prescient. Graham Vyse, The New Republic, "Is Washington Ready for Another Betsy DeVos?," 28 Mar. 2018 Great progress today by DOJ/FBI & our Intel community to bring transparency & accountability re DNC/DCCC hacking. Rebecca Shabad /, NBC News, "Democrats call on Trump to cancel Putin summit after Russian hacking indictments," 13 July 2018 The issue was addressed at the meeting by some of the 20-plus speakers who turned out to demand transparency and accountability from police over the death of 40-year-old Earl McNeil. David Hernandez,, "Residents angry over death of man arrested by police call for full staffing of review board," 9 July 2018 Writing for a six-justice majority, Justice Kagan found that agency officers wielding the ALJs’ powers cannot be appointed by midlevel bureaucrats, shielded from the transparency and accountability that the Constitution’s process ensures. Adam J. White, WSJ, "Regulatory State Has a Bad Day in Court," 24 June 2018 Global norms on transparency and accountability are being better enforced by international institutions. The Christian Science Monitor, "Why nations are not alone in fighting graft," 21 June 2018 Advocates for greater transparency and accountability argue a police officer’s performance of official duties, as well as discipline imposed for misconduct involving civilians, should not be subject to constitutional protection. The Kansas City Star Editorial Board, kansascity, "A database could help track problem police officers. Why don't KC-area prosecutors have one?," 14 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accountability.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accountability

1750, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for accountability

accountable + -ity

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Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

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The first known use of accountability was in 1750

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