Publications

10

Aug

Methodological Note: How to Learn about How We Do Social Accountability in Context?

Social accountability and open government work often borrow ideas, plans and methodologies from others. Many other times local initiatives are innovative, but disconnected from other experiences and debates that could be relevant to amplify their results. The literature on social accountability, anticorruption and related fields shows that while cross-context insights can help inform local work, adaptation and combination, a mix of these is critical towards achieving results. There is no pre-made plan that has impacts across contexts. It is relevant …

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7

Jun

More accountable and responsive governance: How do technologies help make it happen?

Making All Voices Count supports tech-enabled initiatives which amplify citizen voice and nurture government responsiveness, and by building understanding of when and how the technologies help create and support change. In March 2017, some of the programme’s partners met at a learning event to share and analyse their stories of change. They used a framework that describes seven streams of tech-enabled change: the information stream; the feedback stream; the naming-and-shaming stream; the conducive innovation system stream; the connecting citizens stream; …

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30

May

How Transparency Affects Distributional Politics: A Field Experiment among Elected Politicians in Malawi

How does transparency affect distributional politics? This paper shows that it conditions officials’ decisions to target political supporters and needy communities with development resources. It presents the results of a unique experiment in which 333 locally elected politicians in Malawi made real decisions about the allocation of NGO-provided development materials to schools in their area. Prior to making these decisions, half of the politicians were randomly assigned to be informed that letters about their allocation decisions would be sent to local development …

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30

May

Crowdsourcing citizen feedback on district development in Ghana using interactive voice response surveys

This practice paper describes research on crowdsourcing citizen feedback on district development in Ghana. It discusses the use of mobile phone-based interactive voice response surveys, in particular how they can best be used to reach rural women.. It also reflects on the challenges facing a tech provider and a CSO in working together to develop tools for citizen engagement in local government monitoring.

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30

May

Technology innovation hubs and policy engagement

Many technology innovation hubs are developing civic tech solutions to pressing local commercial and social issues. But their full potential to contribute to a more vibrant local policy ecosystem is yet to be achieved. Changes in attitude, strategic outlook and partnership-building are required. This research provides ideas for hubs, policy-makers and donors to consider in order to improve policy engagement and co-creation in the future.

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30

May

Sanctions, Rewards and LearningEnforcing democratic accountability in the delivery of health, education, and water, sanitation and hygiene

“This Discussion Paper identifies and documents how mechanisms such as sanctions, rewards and learning can improve democratic accountability in service delivery around the world. It focuses on three critical public service sectors: health, education, and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). This literature review extends the agenda of International IDEA’s Democracy and Development programme to map out and examine the workings of accountability through democratic means. It analyses the various ways political actors articulate demands, negotiate terms and implement effective service …

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20

Apr

Has Kenya’s ICT revolution triggered more citizen participation?

This research briefing is one of four which turn the spotlight on how the state behaves in instances of accountable governance. Each examines a landmark social justice policy process in Africa, asking when and how the state listened, and to which actors; and why, at times, it chose not to listen. How far does Kenya’s information and communications technology revolution transform e-government – implementing decisions with the help of ICTs – into e-governance – using ICTs to help make decisions? …

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17

Apr

WGF Report 6 -Developing capacities for water integrity: Reflective review of approach and impact of training courses

The outline of the approach highlights lessons learned relating to the importance of appreciating and understanding the context and getting the right participants, along with the importance of follow-up activities and support to alumni. A major trend is the shift from a focus on individuals towards one of institutional change, focussing increasingly on organizational change processes. The report builds on the authors’ extensive experience in organizing capacity development for water integrity, review of capacity development literature and two surveys; one …

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19

Jul

Learning to open government: Findings and reflections on how the Open Government Partnership is playing out, in practice, in five countries

This paper summarizes and synthesizes the findings from five in-depth case studies that explore when and how pro-reform actors have been able to leverage the Open Government Partnership (OGP) — its processes, spaces and resources — to pursue improved government responsiveness and accountability at the country level. It is one of a number of recent efforts to explore the contribution of OGP to more open and effective governance.1 Our research, undertaken by teams of local open government experts in five …

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19

Jul

Making Politics Work for Development: Harnessing transparency and citizen engagement

Too often, government leaders fail to adopt and implement policies that they know are necessary for sustained economic development. Political constraints can prevent leaders from following sound technical advice, even when leaders have the best of intentions. Making Politics Work for Development: Harnessing Transparency and Citizen Engagement focuses on two forces—citizen engagement and transparency—that hold the key to solving government failures by shaping how political markets function.

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