The transparency & accountability movement has gained momentum over twenty years and has given rise to new expectations for government openness in dozens of countries around the world.
The Internet has already helped the movement deploy web-based maps, mobile technologies and interactive media to improve governance, streamline public service delivery and uncover corruption. New technologies enable citizens to get closer to the policy-making process and allow campaigners to build and mobilize grassroots networks, amplify their advocacy and rapidly increase the scale of bring their activities.
The potential of technology to transform transparency & accountability work remains largely untapped. The field has seen a great deal of experimentation, but too little learning.
Without sufficient chances to assess their digital efforts, advocates have lagged in their ability to replicate successful projects or avoid costly mistakes. Additionally, adoption of web and mobile technologies has been slow and fragmented across the sector.
Most transparency & accountability groups lack the tools, training or confidence to fully incorporate technology in their efforts. At the same time, the technology groups who provide these tools don’t always know how to tailor their work for the particular context of the transparency & accountability field. As a result, technology can drive project planning, overshadowing a more mission-driven web or mobile strategy process.
These challenges limit the effectiveness of transparency & accountability organizations in an increasingly digital age. We seek to bridge the gap between technology work and transparency & accountability work in three ways:
Foster collaborations: We are brokering opportunities for collaboration and innovation between organizations and technology groups, to lower transaction costs and speed up the learning curve for transparency & accountability groups.
Focus on sector impact: We have identified specific areas of the transparency & accountability field (including natural resource governance, budget transparency, open data) and specific activity themes (including direct citizen engagement, reaching scale, using data for advocacy).
Educate donors: We are working directly with the donor community to develop informed funding strategies that support improved uses of new technology in this field.
Bridging Transparency & Technology is a multi-stakerholder project. We invite you to: