ICT for Transparency and Accountability

Background

Transparency and Accountability is not a goal in itself but also a prerequisite for successful development in many areas. Having access to accurate information about policies, goals and budgets are an integral part of government structures and development. Access to data and information plays a key role not only in good governance but also in many areas of international development.

What is transparency & accountability?

SPIDER defines transparency as when information about the commitments and performance of various actors is made available (so that it can be used for accountability purposes by other actors).

Accountability is when institutions and actors are held accountable for commitments and performance.

Transparency & Accountability in relation to Sustainable Development Goals

SPIDER recognises that the availability of information and appropriate ICT are key to achieving effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels (SDG 16.6). ICTs are indispensable to sharing, managing and transmitting large quantities of data and reaching a multitude of stakeholders.

SPIDER’s approach to transparency & accountability

SPIDER’s focus for Transparency & Accountability is public service delivery.
We see Transparency & accountability as four interlinked steps:

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Information

Make information available about the commitments and performance of various actors (make sure this is informed by what is really needed).

Access

Inform citizens and other actors about their rights to information and services, facilitate the use of the available information.

Action

Mobilise actors to use the information, communicate the opinions and needs to service providers, use information in debates.

Feedback

Mobilise actors to use the information, communicate the opinions and needs to service providers, use information in debates.

The role of ICT in Transparency & accountability

ICTs can make a significant contribution to each of the four steps of Transparency & Accountability

Information

With focus on on identifying the existing feedback mechanisms and the possibility of enhancing these through ICT.

Access

ICTs can also present information in a variety of ways through different media and interfaces to a wide span of audiences.

Action

Various groups use the information to influence duty bearers. Although the push has been towards digitalising the interface and communication channels between various actors, this may not be the best approach in all cases.

Feedback

With focus on on identifying the existing feedback mechanisms and the possibility of enhancing these through ICT.

What SPIDER supports

Within the framework of T&A, SPIDER will support:

  • Availability of reliable information in an accessible and useable format (Open Data standards)
  • Development, localisation and use of ICT tools in the four processes (Information, Access, Action and Feedback)
  • Implementation of ICT in already existing projects where:
    – The end goal of the project supports SPIDER MTO or STO
    – The project can contribute to other SPIDER projects in the area
  • Follow up on the efficiency of ICT tools in each process (Information, Access, Action and Feedback)

SPIDER will not support

  • Informing about T&A or access to information but not working with T& A issues or providing of information.
  • Publishing of information that is not based on needs of actors in the field.
  • Development of platforms that are not connected to existing channels of information or workflows.
  • Platforms or technical solutions that do not take into account the needs and skills of the users.

Let’s collaborate!

SPIDER is an independent centre with extensive experience in the ICT 4 Development sphere. We are a public organisation and work in a transparent and accountable manner to give advice, map relevant partners and find evidence of ICT being a tool in international development. Contact us for any of the following:

ICT4D/ICT4T&A insights

SPIDER can take part in panel discussions, tailor lectures or signpost you to experts with relevant know-how and experience in the field.

Project/programme collaboration

SPIDER is happy to partner on relevant projects and programmes, coordinate initiatives or be part of consortium funding.

Networks

If you believe SPIDER would be a valued partner in a Network focusing on ICT, Development or Transparency and accountability, please contact us

Resources

SPIDER welcomes tools, reports and media that is for benefit to our partners or the general public.

If you have anything you think we should share, please contact us.

Send us a message!

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