Transparency https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/taxonomy/term/837/all en Weekly wire: The global forum https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-271 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <h4> <img alt="World of News" height="179" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title=" Flickr user fdecomit" width="180" />These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</h4> <div> <strong><a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/research/publication/making-politics-work-for-development" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Making Politics Work for Development: Harnessing Transparency and Citizen Engagement</a></strong></div> <div> <strong>World Bank Group</strong></div> <div> 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.</div> <div>  </div> <div> <strong><a href="https://www.devex.com/news/governing-the-world-as-if-it-counts-88437" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Governing the world 'as if' it counts</a></strong></div> <div> <strong>Devex</strong></div> <div> The most challenging notion to take on board in the governance of today’s world is that not all that counts can be counted. We increasingly rely on numbers as shortcuts to information about the world that we do not have time to digest. The name of the game is governance “as if” the world counts. It might be a smart shortcut sometimes, but we are in deep trouble if we forget that we are doing it “as if” the world counts. Leadership should take making good decisions seriously. If the method by which we get knowledge and the method by which we make decisions is limited to what can be numbered, we are setting up a system of governance that’s systematically getting stuff that actually counts wrong.<br />  </div> <div> </div></div></div> Thu, 28 Jul 2016 14:06:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7472 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Land Tenure: What have we learned four years after approving a set of international land tenure guidelines? https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/land-tenure-what-have-we-learned-four-years-after-approving-set-international-land-tenure-guidelines <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><figure class="image" style="float:left"> <img alt="" height="191" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/7439971728_9af73454e6_z.jpg" title="Photo by Links Media/USAID" width="340" /> <figcaption> <em>Asilya Gemmal displays her land certificate, given by<br /> the Ethiopian government, with USAID assistance.</em></figcaption> </figure> “Congratulations, today your baby is four years old,” Iris Krebber, DFID/UK recently emailed me. Iris was not referring to a child, but rather the Voluntary Guidelines for the Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forest (VGGT), an agreement I had the challenging pleasure of bringing to life by chairing a UN negotiation process that resulted in the first globally agreed recommendations for addressing land, fisheries, and forests governance. Often colleagues don’t remember my name, but they call me “the land guy,” which I suppose is better than the “dirt guy.”<br /> <br /> The call for an international set of guidelines came from many quarters between 2008 and 2010, but was largely driven by concerns raised in international fora by civil society, member states, development partners, and the private sector. These concerns primarily pertained to food security (and specifically food price spikes) and access, and rights to land and other resources by small, medium and large scale producers as they impact investments in food production systems. &nbsp;<br /> <br /> <img alt="" height="136" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/cfs_2.png" style="float:right" title="" width="280" />One of the more notable concerns driving the development of the Guidelines was related to large scale land acquisitions (including what some organizations may sometimes refer to as “land grabbing”). Through a technical process FAO developed the initial draft of the Guidelines, and then initiated a process of input and consultation over two years before the document was given to the UN Committee for World Food Security (UN CFS) for negotiation.<br /> <br /> As the subject of land rights can be very political (no international guidance can address the plethora of land challenges from Latin America to Africa to Asia and beyond with one-solution fits-all-problems), and civil society organizations, member states, and the private sector often have different views and needs in achieving their respective objectives, you can imagine it was not an easy task for CFS to agree to a set of guidelines. <p> </div></div></div> Mon, 13 Jun 2016 14:51:00 +0000 Gregory Myers 7428 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere World Bank’s Access to Information Policy— five+ years and going strong https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/world-bank-s-access-information-policy-five-years-and-going-strong <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="" height="188" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/8206462372_7ab4720ac1_z.jpg" style="float:left" title=" World Bank" width="280" />An active player in the transparency space, the World Bank just released its fifth <a href="https://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/2016/05/26330963/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Access to Information (AI) Annual Report</a>. The report presents the evolution and progress of the Policy on Access to Information (the Policy) since it was launched on July 1, 2010, provides a variety of statistics, and highlights a range of transparency activities carried out in fiscal 2015. Since 2010, the Bank has pushed the frontiers to disclose more information and twice revised the Policy to keep abreast of evolving public demand—in 2013 to clarify declassification of certain Board transcripts, and in 2015 to align the treatment of the documents and records of the Board of Governors with the treatment of those of the Executive Directors. The following are select highlights from the past five years.<br />  <br /><strong>Enhanced information access. </strong>The Policy has provided the public with access to a broad range of historical and current information on operations, research, corporate matters, and Board decisions. The Bank has also received and responded to more than 3,000 access to information requests.  The number of requests declined from 700 in 2010 to 474 in 2015, due to the Bank’s proactive and systematic efforts to disclose information online. The main entry points to the Bank’s wealth of information are the <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/projects" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Projects and Operations</a> portal, which provides detailed information on lending operations, and the <a href="https://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/home" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Documents and Reports</a> repository, which contains more than 200,000 documents that are freely accessible to the public. Further, the <a href="https://archivesholdings.worldbank.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Archives Holdings</a> website offers a growing collection of digitized records dating to the 1940s.<br />  <br /><strong>Governance structure and appeals. </strong>The Policy has established two robust bodies to manage the appeals process—the <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/access-to-information/ai-committee" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">AI Committee</a> and the external <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/access-to-information/ai-appealsboard" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">AI Appeals Board</a>. A new chair of the AI Committee was appointed last fall, Stefan Koeberle, Bank director of strategy, results and risk. In 2015, the membership of the AI Appeals Board was renewed with the selection of a new member and the re-appointment of two previous members. The number of appeals submitted to these bodies has been low, possibly indicating that proactive disclosure and the system for responding to requests are working well. The appeals mechanism ensures that the Bank implements the Policy effectively.</p> </div></div></div> Tue, 10 May 2016 18:41:00 +0000 Hannah George 7396 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Information is power: Silvio Waisbord on how digital technology changes the public sphere and notions of privacy https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/information-power-silvio-waisbord-how-digital-technology-changes-public-sphere-and-notions-privacy <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even">How do digital media affect traditional theories of the “public sphere” and power? Are we living in a modern-day panopticon?<br /><br /> The notion of the “public sphere” is useful worldwide to consider how citizens can and do articulate demands to the market or to states. The <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/defining-public-sphere-3-paragraphs" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">public sphere</a> is generally conceived as a place (figurative or literal) in which citizens can share information, debate issues and opinions, and restrain the interests of the powerful elite. This space is critical to the formation of public will and the transmission of it to official authorities.<br /><br /> In contrast, the <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/living-panopticon" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Panopticon</a> is a design for a prison or jail which allows watchmen to observe all inmates at all times without the inmates knowing whether they are being observed or not.  The idea has been used to discuss online privacy, as individuals are often unaware of how governments and companies collect and use the information they gather about them online.  Moreover, the revelation that governments and companies work together to “spy” on citizens, as <a href="https://mashable.com/2014/06/05/edward-snowden-revelations/#_BDdawoU8iqu" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">revealed by Edward Snowden</a> revived the concern that a modern-day panopticon might be possible.   <br /><br /> But these concepts raise another important question: How can the public sphere, which aims to limit excess power, continue to function if the state is monitoring citizen activity?  Much of the information that is collected and tracked online is willingly shared by individuals as they search the internet, use mobile apps, and contact friends and family. This activity is vital to the future of a public sphere around the world, but it also allows governments and companies to intrude in our private lives.<br /><br /> Silvio Waisbord explores these two evergreen, yet very immediate concerns. He argues that while digital technologies have improved the capacities of states and companies to track human activity, digital media can also be used for democratic purposes. <br />  <div class="asset-wrapper asset aid-262 asset-video"> <strong > The modern public sphere vs. The online panopticon </strong> <div class="content"> <div class="field field-name-field-asset-video-file field-type-emvideo field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><object type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" data="//www.youtube.com/v/ER3OwxmQvkM"> <param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/ER3OwxmQvkM" /> <param name="wmode" value="transparent" /> <param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /> </object> </div></div></div></div> </div></div></div></div> Thu, 28 Apr 2016 18:31:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7385 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-255 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><img alt="World of News" height="179" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title="" width="180" /><span>These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</span><br />   <p> <strong><a href="https://harvardpolitics.com/world/transparency-in-sub-saharan-africa/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Technology for Transparency: Cases from Sub-Saharan Africa</a></strong><br /> Harvard Political Review<br /> Over the last decade, Africa has experienced previously unseen levels of economic growth and market vibrancy. Developing countries can only achieve equitable growth and reduce poverty rates, however, if they are able to make the most of their available resources. To do this, they must maximize the impact of aid from donor governments and NGOs and ensure that domestic markets continue to diversify, add jobs, and generate tax revenues. Yet, in most developing countries, there is a dearth of information available about industry profits, government spending, and policy outcomes that prevents efficient action.</p> <p> <strong><a href="https://www.huffingtonpost.com/maciej-bartkowski/popular-uprising-against-_b_9567604.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Popular Uprising against Democratically Elected Leaders. What Makes it Legitimate?</a></strong><br /> Huffington Post<br /> In the last five years, democratically elected governments in countries as diverse as Guatemala, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Ukraine, Thailand, Macedonia, South Africa, Spain, Iceland, Hungary and presently governments in Moldova, Brazil and Poland were all challenged and some of them forced to step down by mass-based popular uprisings. If it had not been for the strategic weakness of the Occupy movement, the United States might have also seen toppling of its own democratically elected leaders closely tied to business elites. This might still happen. If Donald Trump wins the presidential election and attempts to implement some of his most outrageous campaign promises popular uprising may be in the making sooner than we think.  When is people rising against their own government legitimate? A number of Western philosophical treaties, historical practice and agreements, including declarations of people’s self-determination rights stressed the moral and legal permissibility, and even necessity, to rise up against abusive regimes.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 14 Apr 2016 14:02:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7362 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Does transparency hobble effective governance? https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/does-transparency-hobble-effective-governance <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="" height="186" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/2214125181_c811f9cdc0_z.jpg" style="float:right" title=" BlankBlankBlank" width="280" />A remarkable debate on transparency and open government took place on March 15, 2016 at the Reynolds Journalism Institute and the Truman School of Public Affairs at the University of Missouri, Missouri, USA.  The issue was: <a href="https://www.rjionline.org/events/opengovernment" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong>Is American Government too open?</strong></a> Professor Bruce E. Cain of Stanford University argued that “<a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/gove.12205/full" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Yes, American Government Is Too Open</a>”, and Professor Charles Lewis of American University, Washington DC, argued that “<a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/gove.12203/full" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">No, American Government is Not Too Open</a>”. You can <a href="https://www.rjionline.org/stories/is-our-government-too-open-a-debate-on-government-transparency" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">watch the debate here</a>.<br /><br /> It is a rich and illuminating exchange, and one that the two professors somehow manage to keep civil. I watched the debate online but in what follows I draw from the written commentary submitted by both professors, and I try to focus on the universally applicable points that each one made.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 31 Mar 2016 15:32:00 +0000 Sina Odugbemi 7355 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Four ways open data is changing the world https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/four-ways-open-data-changing-world <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Library at Mohammed V University at Agdal, Rabat" height="186" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/9126899431_2ae2fbbc3d_z.jpg" style="float:left" title=" Arne Hoel / World Bank" width="280" />Despite global commitments to and increasing enthusiasm for open data, little is actually known about its use and impact. What kinds of social and economic transformation has open data brought about, and what is its future potential? How—and under what circumstances—has it been most effective? How have open data practitioners mitigated risks and maximized social good?</p> <p> Even as proponents of open data extol its virtues, the field continues to suffer from a paucity of empirical evidence. This limits our understanding of open data and its impact.</p> <p> Over the last few months, <a href="https://www.thegovlab.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">The GovLab</a> (<a href="https://twitter.com/thegovlab" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@thegovlab</a>), in collaboration with <a href="https://www.omidyar.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Omidyar Network</a> (<a href="https://twitter.com/OmidyarNetwork" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@OmidyarNetwork</a>), has worked to address these shortcomings by developing 19 detailed open data case studies from around the world. The case studies have been selected for their sectoral and geographic representativeness. They are built in part from secondary sources (“desk research”), and also from more than 60 first-hand interviews with important players and key stakeholders. In a related collaboration with Omidyar Network, <a href="https://barefootintocyberspace.com/about/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Becky Hogge</a> (<a href="https://twitter.com/barefoot_techie" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@barefoot_techie</a>), an independent researcher, has developed an additional six open data case studies, all focused on the United Kingdom.  Together, these case studies, seek to provide a more nuanced understanding of the various processes and factors underlying the demand, supply, release, use and impact of open data.</p> <p> After receiving and integrating comments from dozens of peer reviewers through a unique open process, we are delighted to share an initial batch of 10 case studies, as well three of Hogge’s UK-based stories. These are being made available at a new custom-built repository, <a href="https://odimpact.org" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Open Data’s Impact</a>, that will eventually house all the case studies, key findings across the studies, and additional resources related to the impact of open data. All this information will be stored in machine-readable HTML and PDF format, and will be searchable by area of impact, sector and region.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 18 Feb 2016 16:32:00 +0000 Stefaan Verhulst 7311 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere World Development Report 2016: “The internet unites people; its governance divides nations” https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/world-development-report-2016-internet-unites-people-its-governance-divides-nations <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><img alt="© John Stanmeyer/National Geographic Creative. Used with the permission of John Stanmeyer/National Geographic Creative. Further permission required for reuse." height="352" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/wdr16-758948.jpg" style="float:right" title="© John Stanmeyer/National Geographic Creative. Used with the permission of John Stanmeyer/National Geographic Creative. Further permission required for reuse." width="280" />The World Development Report (WDR) 2016, a World Bank Group Flagship Report, is titled <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/publication/wdr2016" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><strong><em>Digital Dividends</em></strong></a>. At 330 pages, it is a big piece of work, and it is an Aladdin’s Cave of information gems, brilliant analysis, and the fulfilled promise of a thorough-going education on its chosen subject.<br /><br /> According to the press statement announcing the report, the…<br />   <blockquote> <p> <em>…report says that while the internet, mobile phones and other digital technologies are spreading rapidly throughout the developing world, the anticipated digital dividends of higher growth, more jobs, and better public services have fallen short of expectations, and 60 percent of the world’s population remains excluded from the ever-expanding digital economy. According to the new <strong>‘World Development Report 2016:  Digital Dividends,’ </strong>authored by<strong> Co-Directors, Deepak Mishra and Uwe Deichmann</strong> and team<strong>, </strong>the benefits of rapid digital expansion have been skewed towards the wealthy, skilled, and influential around the world, who are better positioned to take advantage of the new technologies. In addition, though the number of internet users worldwide has more than tripled since 2005, four billion people still lack access to the internet.</em></p> </blockquote> <p> In what follows, I am going to discuss a small part of the report that I am particularly interested in. And that is the vexed subject of <strong>internet governance</strong>. As we all know by now, the dream of the founders of the internet was that it would be a libertarian paradise and a virtual monument to a transcendent cosmopolitanism: a truly free and borderless world. Sadly, all kinds of companies and governments are turning the internet into something else entirely.  How to govern the internet is now a bone of discord.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 04 Feb 2016 17:33:00 +0000 Sina Odugbemi 7297 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-246 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <h4> <img alt="World of News" height="139" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title="" width="140" />These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</h4> <p> <strong><a href="https://www.planusa.org/role-of-ict-in-social-accountability" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Transparency, Accountability, and Technology</a></strong><br /> Plan International<br /> The recently launched Sustainable Development Goals have kicked off a renewed development agenda that features, among other things, a dedicated emphasis on peace, justice, and strong institutions. This emphasis, encapsulated in Goal #16, contains several sub-priorities, including reducing corruption; developing effective, accountable, and transparent institutions; ensuring inclusive, participatory, and representative decision-making; and ensuring access to information.  Indeed, the governance-related Goals merely stamp an official imprimatur on what have now become key buzzwords in development. Naturally, where there are buzzwords, there are “tools.” In many cases, those “tools” turn out to be information and communications technologies, and the data flows they facilitate. It’s no wonder, then, that technology has been embraced by the development community as a crucial component of the global accountability and transparency “toolkit.”</p> <p> <strong><a href="https://freedomhouse.org/sites/default/files/FH_FITW_Report_2016.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Freedom in the World 2016</a></strong><br /> Freedom House<br /> The world was battered in 2015 by overlapping crises that fueled xenophobic sentiment in democratic countries, undermined the economies of states dependent on the sale of natural resources, and led authoritarian regimes to crack down harder on dissent. These unsettling developments contributed to the 10th consecutive year of decline in global freedom.<br /><br /></div></div></div> Thu, 04 Feb 2016 15:08:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7296 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere The things we do: The economic, social, and personal costs of optimism https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/things-we-do-economic-social-and-personal-costs-optimism <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Construction worker for the Panama Canal expansion project" height="187" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/8261679399_a45781a030_z.jpg" style="float:left" title="" width="280" />It is now the second week of 2016 and many people are working (or struggling) to follow through on their New Year’s resolutions. Whether they have decided to run a marathon, travel more, or save money, many people endeavor to create positive, new habits while shedding existing habits they think are less positive.  These resolutions, though, tend to last one or two months, fading into the backgrounds of their consciousness as spring arrives. <br />  <br /> It’s a typical combination of the planning fallacy, unrealistic optimism, and a bit of self-regulatory failure.<br />  <br /> And this sort of challenge is not specific to New Year’s resolutions or even to issues pertaining to individuals.  City councils frequently draw up budgets that are too lean, road construction frequently lasts much longer than expected, and advances in technology often require much more investment than planners expect. So what’s at work here?  Why is it that people have a hard time judging the amount of time, energy, and resources that a project will take?</p> </div></div></div> Tue, 12 Jan 2016 18:40:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7274 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere #6 from 2015: Five myths about governance and development https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/6-2015-five-myths-about-governance-and-development <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <p> <em><strong>Our Top Ten blog posts by readership in 2015</strong>.  This post was<span> </span><a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/five-myths-about-governance-and-development" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">originally posted</a><span> </span>on February 26, 2015. It was also the<span> </span></em><a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/blog-post-month-five-myths-about-governance-and-development" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><em>blog post of the month for March 2015</em><em>.</em></a><br /><br /><img alt="" height="187" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/1108798330_6c772062b5_o.jpg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title="" width="280" />In some areas of development policy, deep-rooted assumptions are extremely hard to dislodge. Like science-fiction androids or the many-headed Hydra, these are monsters that can sustain any number of mortal blows and still regenerate. Capable researchers armed with overwhelming evidence are no threat to them.<br />  <br /> The importance of good governance for development is one such assumption. Take last month’s enquiry report on <a href="https://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201415/cmselect/cmintdev/704/70404.htm" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Parliamentary Strengthening</a> by the International Development Committee of the UK parliament. It references the <a href="https://www.un.org/sg/management/beyond2015.shtml" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">UN High Level Panel’s</a> opinion that ‘good governance and effective institutions’ should be among the goals for ending global poverty by 2030. It would have done better to reference the evidence in 2012’s rigorously researched UN publication <a href="https://www.bloomsbury.com/us/is-good-governance-good-for-development-9781780932224/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Is Good Governance Good for Development?</a><br />  <br /> Here are five governance myths about which the strong scientific consensus might – eventually – slay some monsters.</div></div></div> Tue, 29 Dec 2015 16:37:00 +0000 David Booth 7247 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere #7 from 2015: 5 things you should know about governance as a proposed sustainable development goal https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/7-2015-5-things-you-should-know-about-governance-proposed-sustainable-development-goal <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <em><strong>Our Top Ten blog posts by readership in 2015</strong>.  This post was <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/5-things-you-should-know-about-governance-proposed-sustainable-development-goal" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">originally posted </a>on June 8, 2015. It was also the <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/blog-post-month-5-things-you-should-know-about-governance-proposed-sustainable-development-goal" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">blog post of the month for June 2015</a>. </em></p> <h4> <img alt="South Sudanese prepare for independence" height="186" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/5908593119_779d94d0cc_z.jpg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:left" title="" width="280" />Vinay Bhargava, the chief technical adviser and a board member at <a href="https://ptfund.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Partnership for Transparency Fund</a>, provides five takeaways on governance and development interactions from a recent panel discussion hosted by the 1818 Society.</h4> <p> On May 27, I had the pleasure of serving as a panelist at an event organized by the Governance Thematic Group of 1818 Society of the World Bank Group (WBG) Alumni.<br /><br /> The panelists were: Mr. Homi Kharas, Senior Fellow and Deputy Director for the Global Economy and Development program at the Brookings Institution; Ms. Heike Gramckow, Acting Practice Manager, Rule of Law and Access to Justice at the Governance Global Practice at the World Bank Group; Mr. Brian Levy, Professor of the Practice, School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University; Mr. Jerome Sauvage, Deputy head of UN Office in Washington DC. Mr. Fredrick Temple, currently Adviser at the Partnership for Transparency Fund, moderated the workshop. <br />  <br /> The panel presentations and discussion were hugely informative and insightful. I am pleased to share with you my five takeaways that anyone interested in governance and development interactions ought to know.</p> </div></div></div> Wed, 23 Dec 2015 19:59:00 +0000 Vinay Bhargava 7246 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Corruption in fragile states: A panel discussion on the intersections of development, conflict and exploitation https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/corruption-fragile-states-panel-discussion-intersections-development-conflict-and-exploitation <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Just say NO to corruption" height="158" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/73757271_0a5f7fd124_z.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="280" />Corruption is a global threat to development and democratic rule. It diverts public resources to private interests, leaving fewer resources to build schools, hospitals, roads and other public facilities. When development money is diverted to private bank accounts, major infrastructure projects and badly needed human services come to a halt. Corruption also hinders democratic governance by destroying the rule of law, the integrity of institutions, and public trust in leaders. Sadly, the vulnerable suffer first and worst when corruption takes hold.<br /><br /> In fragile environments, however, the effects of corruption can be far more expensive. Corruption fuels extremism and undermines international efforts to build peace and security.<br /><br /> This was the theme of a panel discussion, entitled “Corruption in Fragile States: The Development Challenge,” which brought together <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/about/people/leonard-frank-mccarthy" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Leonard McCarthy</a>, the World Bank’s Vice President of Integrity; <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/about/people/jan-walliser" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Jan Walliser</a>, the World Bank Vice President of Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions; <a href="https://www.worldbank.org/en/about/people/shanta-devarajan" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Shanta Devarajan</a>, World Bank Chief Economist of Middle East &amp; North Africa; <a href="https://www.usaid.gov/who-we-are/organization/r-david-harden" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">R. David Harden</a>, USAID Mission Director for West Bank and Gaza; <a href="https://www.resourcegovernance.org/about/staff-bios" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Daniel Kaufmann</a>, President of Natural Resource Governance Institute; and <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/mathomas2" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Melissa Thomas</a>, Political Scientist and author of “Govern Like Us.”</p> </div></div></div> Mon, 21 Dec 2015 21:33:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7256 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere #9 from 2015: A global movement against corruption: It is happening now! https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/9-2015-global-movement-against-corruption-it-happening-now <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><strong><em>Our Top Ten blog posts by readership in 2015. </em></strong><em>This post was <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/global-movement-against-corruption-it-happening-now" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">originally posted </a>on October 26, 2015.</em> <p> <br /><span>Also available in: <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/voices/es/un-movimiento-mundial-contra-la-corrupcion-esta-ocurriendo-ahora" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Español</a> | <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/voices/fr/un-mouvement-mondial-contre-la-corruption-c-est-maintenant" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Français</a> | <a href="https://blogs.worldbank.org/voices/ar/publicsphere/global-movement-against-corruption-it-happening-now" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">العربية</a></span></p> <p> <img alt="Third Annual International Corruption Hunter Alliance" height="158" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/15791898719_7739fa9684_z.jpg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title="" width="280" />Taking note of <a href="https://www.thenational.ae/business/economy/clamping-down-on-corruption-will-help-the-world-develop" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">headline news in recent weeks</a>, one cannot escape the reality that efforts to fighting corruption are succeeding. A decade ago, success was a privilege to societies who -by virtue of democratic gains- could claim rights to holding public officials accountable. Today, it is not easy to get away with corruption. Not even if you are a major multinational, a senior government official, or an institution with millions of followers across the world.<br /><br /> Within our network- <a href="https://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/ORGANIZATION/ORGUNITS/EXTDOII/0,,contentMDK:23195265~pagePK:64168427~piPK:64168435~theSitePK:588921,00.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">the World Bank International Corruption Hunters Alliance</a>- we feel optimistic about all that is happening to support our mission; that of ensuring every development dollar is spent with integrity. We go to work every day and the focus is how do we prevent bad things from happening. To achieve that at the World Bank Group, we are continually advancing our <a href="https://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/ORGANIZATION/ORGUNITS/EXTDOII/0,,contentMDK:22641983~menuPK:2452528~pagePK:64168445~piPK:64168309~theSitePK:588921,00.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">investigative techniques</a>, our <a href="https://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/ORGANIZATION/ORGUNITS/EXTDOII/0,,contentMDK:22959390~pagePK:64168445~piPK:64168309~theSitePK:588921,00.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">preventive</a> advice, monitoring the <a href="https://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTDOII/Resources/IntegrityComplianceGuidelines_2_1_11web.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">compliance standards</a> of <a href="https://web.worldbank.org/external/default/main?theSitePK=84266&amp;contentMDK=64069844&amp;menuPK=116730&amp;pagePK=64148989&amp;piPK=64148984" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">debarred entities</a> and engaging with partners across <a href="https://lnadbg4.adb.org/oai001p.nsf/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">multilateral development banks</a>, national enforcement agencies and <a href="https://live.worldbank.org/tax-evasion-development-finance" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">CSOs</a> to strengthen this young global movement against corruption. It is critical that this momentum continues to sustain change at a global scale.<br /><br /> Undoubtedly we face a few challenges along the way; some more complex than others, none that cannot be overcome. <a href="https://siteresources.worldbank.org/EXTDOII/Resources/588920-1444050544186/INT_FY15_Annual_Update.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Last fiscal year</a>, the World Bank prevented approximately $138 million across 20 contracts from being <a href="https://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTDOII/Resources/HarmonizedCorpGroupsPrinciples9.10.12.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">awarded to companies</a> that had attempted to engage in misconduct. This is progress that could not have been achieved without years of <a href="https://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/ORGANIZATION/ORGUNITS/EXTDOII/0,,contentMDK:22641983~menuPK:2452528~pagePK:64168445~piPK:64168309~theSitePK:588921,00.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">investigative experience</a> invested in gathering evidence, recognizing patterns of misconduct, and documenting lessons learnt.</p> </div></div></div> Wed, 16 Dec 2015 19:14:00 +0000 Leonard McCarthy 7244 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Internet governance 2015: Brazil and beyond https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/internet-governance-2015-brazil-and-beyond <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div> <div> <h4> Christian Moller explores the future of the Internet Governance Forum as the November 2015 IGF meeting in Brazil approaches.</h4> </div> <div> <p> <img alt="Table flags and backboard of the 7th Internet Governance Forum" height="171" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/8163605644_59e28e6934_z.jpg" style="float:left" title="" width="280" />2015 continues to be a decisive year for Internet governance. As in 2014 with the passage of Marco Civil and the NETmundial Meeting, Brazil is again in the focus of this year’s developments as the tenth meeting of the UN Internet Governance Forum (IGF) will convene in João Pessoa in November. Titled “Evolution of Internet Governance: Empowering Sustainable Development,” in anticipation of this year’s IGF, human rights advocates have already begun to ask whether Brazil’s approach to internet governance might serve as a model for the rest of the world.</p> <p> <strong>Brazil 2014: Marco Civil and NETmundial</strong></p> <p> In April 2014, a Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance, also known as <a href="https://netmundial.br/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">NETmundial</a>, was hosted by the Brazilian government in São Paulo. NETmundial brought together over nine hundred attendees from governments, international organizations, the private sector, and civil society and resulted in the adoption of a (non-binding) <a href="https://document.netmundial.br/net-content/uploads/2014/04/NETmundial-draft-outcome-document_April_14.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Internet Governance Roadmap</a>. Following the meeting, a number of pieces <a href="https://www.global.asc.upenn.edu/multistakeholderism-unmasked-how-the-netmundial-initiative-shifts-battlegrounds-in-internet-governance/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">reviewed</a> and commented on NETmundial’s outcome and final documents. The Center for Global Communication’s <a href="https://globalnetpolicy.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Internet Policy Observatory</a>, for example, published <a href="https://www.global.asc.upenn.edu/publications/beyond-netmundial-the-roadmap-for-institutional-improvements-to-the-global-internet-governance-ecosystem/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Beyond NETmundial: The Roadmap for Institutional Improvements to the Global Internet Governance Ecosystem</a> to explore how sections of “NETmundial Multistakeholder Statement” could be implemented. The meeting also played host to a series <a href="https://www.global.asc.upenn.edu/the-fair-of-competing-narratives-civil-societyies-after-netmundial/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">diverging narratives</a> not only between governments, States, and civil society, but also among various civil society actors.<br /></div></div></div> Thu, 19 Nov 2015 19:49:00 +0000 CGCS 7227 at https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere