Corruption researchers tend to focus a lot of attention on why systemically corrupt countries fail to improve and why anticorruption efforts often fall flat. As such, the field has had a difficult time identifying and explaining how positive change happens in order to inspire new and more effective anti-corruption interventions.
Recent research by Heather Marquette and Caryn Peiffer focuses on the opposite: potential success stories in anti-corruption. Using a novel three-step methodology developed to identify previously hidden ‘positive outliers’, they look at sectors within a country that have successfully reduced bribery against the odds in otherwise systemically corrupt countries. Having identified up to 18 potential cases, they drill down in two ‘positive outlier’ cases - Uganda’s health sector and South Africa’s police - to uncover the political processes and policies that have been responsible for bribery reduction in each case. In doing so, they draw out lessons about how positive changes happened and what can be learned for more successful anti-corruption interventions.
However, their success cases also highlight some important tensions that raise red flags for future interventions, and they look at important lessons from these as well.
We look forward to welcoming Heather Marquette to present the findings and to discuss the potential implications for anti-corruption policy and practice together with Francesca Recanatini from the World Bank.
We at the Natural Resource Governance Institute are excited to announce the June launch of Petronia, the first online simulation game of natural resource governance. The launch will be followed by an interactive discussion with leading academics in the field, game designers, and practitioners from the anticorruption and transparency movement. Join us for as we explore the lessons learned and exciting future directions in gaming for good governance!
Refreshments and reception to follow the discussion.
When Heads of State are Embroiled in Cases of Serious Crime and Corruption: International Perspectives
U.S. politics are under increasing strain as multiple investigations of President Trump and his presidential campaign, business associates, and top officials progress. The investigations raise tough questions about foreign involvement in U.S. elections, illicit payments, campaign finance violations, and obstruction of justice.
What can US civil society learn from similar cases around the world? What can democracy defenders do to anticipate the consequences of cases that roil the sense of stability and democracy? How well are our democratic institutions and norms working from a comparative perspective? What should civil society do and anticipate to ensure and protect those norms and institutions in light of lessons learned from around the world?
We invite you to a conversation on June 12 about what happens to a country’s democracy when the head of state is embroiled in investigations into serious crimes and corruption.
Dan argues that high-quality implementation of foreign aid programs often requires contextual information that cannot be seen by those in distant headquarters. Tight controls and a focus on reaching pre-set measurable targets often prevent front-line workers from using skill, local knowledge, and creativity to solve problems in ways that maximize the impact of foreign aid. Drawing on a novel database of over 14,000 discrete development projects across nine aid agencies and eight paired case studies of development projects, he argues that aid agencies will often benefit from giving field agents the authority to use their own judgments to guide aid delivery. This “navigation by judgment” is particularly valuable when environments are unpredictable and when accomplishing an aid program’s goals is hard to accurately measure.
Every year RightsCon brings together activists, technologists, policy makers, and business and government representatives to talk about the current state of human rights in the digital age.
Members from the Open Gov Hub community attended this year's RightsCon in Toronto on May 16-18, and we want to share all that we learned (or didn't learn) with you during this brownbag lecture.
Dhanaraj Thakur (Web Foundation), Kristi Arbogast (Open Gov Hub), and Ulrich Mans (Political & Legal Advisor on Human Rights and UN Affairs) will be presenting, so come eager to learn and ask questions about:
discussions between the AI ethics, open data, and privacy communities
human rights defender technology
the digital divide and gender gap
artificial intelligence in low and middle income countries
Join us to learn how practical applications of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) can change the way your organization sees, measures and interacts with the world. NGOs and International Organizations to support core business activities including fundraising and business development, advocacy and communications, program management and implementation, and monitoring and evaluation to name a few.
GIS helps organizations to advance their vision and achieve their mission faster by expanding their understanding, reach and impact.
GIS has the power to change how we think and how we act, it is transformational! It integrates geographic science into everything we measure, analyze, predict, plan, and execute.
Please join us to find out how to get started or how to advance your existing GIS platform. There will be food, drinks, and breakout sessions to learn more.
Integrity Idol is an innovative global campaign run by citizens in search of honest public servants.
Integrity Idol began in Nepal in 2014, spread to Liberia in 2015 and has now evolved into a global campaign that is currently in 6 countries and has been viewed by more than 10 million people worldwide.
Over the last year, Accountability Lab ran the first ever Integrity Idol Campaign in South Africa. After nominations were received from all of the country and nominees were thoroughly vetted, we are now in the final stage of the campaign where citizens get to vote for their favorite honest public official from 5 finalists.
There is no better way to get a feel for Integrity Idol than by viewing it firsthand, so bring your lunch and join us for a casual screening of 5 short films (about 5 min each) highlighting the work of the current Integrity Idol South Africa finalists.
Cheri-Leigh Erasmus serves at the Accountability Lab's Programs and Learning Manager and will facilitate this event. She's a spent a decade in the higher education and nonprofit management arenas in South Africa and the US. The Accountability Lab supports change-makers to develop and implement positive ideas for integrity in their communities, unleashing positive social and economic change.
Why do so many governments struggle with delivering the most basic, needed services to their people? And how can development practitioners better support the building of state institutions that can better do so?
The Open Gov Hub is pleased to host a book talk on Building State Capability with co-author Michael Woolcock of the World Bank and Harvard Kennedy School, and a panel discussion with diverse perspectives to address these questions.
This book articulates and addresses underlying problems at the very heart of the work of international development (getting at “what is truly the essence of the development problem,” in the words of Francis Fukuyama’s review of the book). It then presents problem driven iterative adaptation (PDIA) as an effective approach to address this field’s essential (even existential) challenge.
Open Gov Hub is pleased to announce a free website workshop designed to give attendees hands-on, expert advice to simplify, clarify, and boost website engagement and online conversion rates.
Erick Pfleiderer, Creative and User Experience (UX) Director at Taoti Creative, will be visiting Open Gov Hub, May 10, at 12pm in the Amenities Lounge. He’ll offer best practices for UX and effective research methods to equip you with tools you need to understand your users’ thinking and behavior – and lead them to take the actions you want. You’ll gain insight into what works and what doesn’t work. You’ll learn what steps you can take to make your website a more effective information and communications resource that people visit again and again.
This is an event hosted by Hub Member Global Integrity during OpenGov Week.
Following the release of preliminary research data for the sixth round of its Africa Integrity Indicators (AII), Global Integrity is pleased to invite you to an online live Q&A session to take place on Wednesday, 9 May 2018 from 12:30-13:30 GMT (08:30-09:30 ET) during OpenGov Week.
Please join us for the second installment of our free workshop with District Capital Management's Alvin Carlos.
In this session, participants will learn the following things in regards to working in the non-profit sector:
1) Main types of investments in our 401(k)/ 403(b), and pros/cons of each.
2) Impact of 401(k) fund fees.
3) Benefits of a Roth IRA.
4) How to do basic retirement planning projections.
No need to have attended the first session to attend this session.
During this workshop attendees will learn about Insights for ArcGIS, a web based platform that offers a data analytics workbench where users can explore spatial and non-spatial data, answer questions users didn't know to ask, and quickly deliver powerful results. It is a fusion of geographic visualization and data analysis that creates a new workflow for doing iterative spatial analysis and knowledge discovery. This session will show how Insights unlocks the power of data with a modernized user experience.
This session will address these and other questions: How can I visualize my data better? How I can integrate my data with data from other sources? How can I save the workflow and create different scenarios?
Many of the social, environmental, and economic challenges we face are downstream consequences of outmoded economic systems and organisational models whose roots date back to the industrial age. The scale, urgency, and complexity of these challenges demand a fundamental upgrade to business-as-usual.
Over the past few decades we have seen many for-profit companies broadening their purpose to pursue social and environmental aims, while many nonprofits and governmental organizations have adopted market-based approaches to advance their goals. At the same time, a rapidly growing movement of “for-benefit” enterprises around the world have been leveraging the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. These pioneering for-benefits are challenging the traditional boundaries that separate the public, private, and social sectors, giving rise to a new, fourth sector of the economy.
Join us with the CEO of Fourth Sector Group, Heerad Sabeti, and Professor of Government and Politics at George Mason University, Alan J. Abramson, to hear more.
While transparency around land transactions has been clearly established as a best practice for responsible investment, land transparency is rare, and lags far behind transparency in the extractive industries. This brownbag lunch will explore how to advance land transparency, focusing in particular on ways to design initiatives or interventions that support project-affected people. After a brief set of remarks from discussants, and a short overview of the experiences of OpenLandContracts.org--the world's first repository of publicly available investor-state land contracts--participants will engage in a lively discussion and brainstorming session.
Will the U.S. Finally Tackle the Anonymous Shell Companies?
Anonymous shell companies make it extremely easy for corrupt and criminal actors both here and around the world, not to mention tax evaders, to hide and launder illicit wealth. From the Panama Papers to the Magnitsky scandal, the world is hearing more and more about this problem. As April marks the two-year anniversary of the release of the Panama Papers, it is important to reflect on what progress has been made to date in the United States to tackle anonymous ownership.
The event will include the launch of a new report by Transparency International, “G20 Leaders or Laggards”, which reviews G20 promises on tackling anonymous companies and will shed light on the status of beneficial ownership transparency in the United States compared to other jurisdictions.
The forum will bring together three speakers who will speak to why tackling anonymous companies is one of the key anti-corruption (and pro-democracy) challenges of our time, the limited progress made to-date in tackling the problem, and the outlook for potential reforms over the next several months.
Open Gov Hub has been the meeting place for people and innovative ideas for 4 years now, and we'd love to celebrate this achievement with all of our friends!
Please join us for snacks, drinks, and networking (this *is* DC, afterall).
We've also got some fun games in store for all willing participants, so come ready to party and celebrate with all of us at Open Gov Hub.
This event will feature a discussion between Matthew Murray and Anton Pominov, to discuss the current state of play for Russian anti-corruption activists in Russia. It will explore what opportunities for progress in the fight against corruption exist in Russia and what strategic choices Transparency International’s chapter in Russia makes to address current challenges to the field in Russia.
Ample time for discussion with the audience will be made in order to ensure open dialogue with attendees.
The District of Columbia Mayor’s Open Government Advisory Group is consisted of 24 public and District of Columbia government members.
At this meeting, the Group will focus on further defining and documenting priorities for the coming months and begin putting together work plans for each subcommittee. Several new members will also be introduced at April’s meeting.
Information that exposes serious abuses of public trust can catalyze accountability and reform. Whistleblowers—employees who discover and disclose significant wrongdoing—are some of the most valuable sources of such information, and as such can be critical to the work of public interest organizations across a wide range of issues. In a political climate hostile to truth and open government, whistleblowers provide transparency essential to a functional democracy.
Boxed lunches will be offered immediately following the training.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out an ambitious agenda for countries around the world, and data is essential to help fulfill that agenda. The data requirements for reporting on the SDGs present an unprecedented opportunity for governments to track and evaluate their progress. SDG reporting can also be a tool to help countries achieve their goals.
Join us for a happy hour on March 14th from 5-7pm EST at the OpenGov Hub to launch the SDG National Reporting Initiative's website and report. Drinks and light refreshments will be served.
Whistleblowing in the Workplace: Lessons on Promoting Ethical Workplaces from Transparency International Ireland (BBL)
Join us to meet with the visiting founder and head of Transparency International's chapter in Ireland John Devitt, to learn about an innovative initiative in Ireland to help support people to report any kind of wrongdoing or violations of integrity in the workplace. Integrity at Work is a multi-stakeholder not-for-profit initiative for employers, employees, trade unions, and regulators. It aims to create cultural change by promoting supportive environments for whistleblowers through training, best practice exchange, online resources and specialist advice and guidance.
He will also share their experience establishing a Speak Up Helpline that has been in existence since 2011 (Ireland's only free help line to anyone who wants to raise any concerns of wrongdoing), and their efforts to connect whistleblowers and other citizens speaking out again wrongdoing to legal support.
Tax season is here, so now is a great time to reflect on the state of your personal finances and gain tools and tips to help you set goals for your personal financial future. This workshop is specifically geared towards those who work in non-profits.
Join for this pro bono workshop (which typically costs $300) with Alvin Carlos of District Capital Management to:
Learn how to budget smartly, be debt-free, and increase your credit score.
Join the Sunlight Foundation's Open Cities team on Open Data Day 2018 to help assess open data in American cities. We'll give you an easy tutorial on how to search for open datasets and how to add that information to the Census. Then you'll pick a city to focus on and complete its entry on the Census. Once you’re done, stick around for food and drinks and to talk with some of DC’s open data experts.
Come gather at the meeting place for all things open gov to hear from some of our members about their latest work and to engage with our community. Drinks and snacks will also be provided.
Ignite Nights are fast-paced presentations that quickly convey a topic in 5 minutes. They're fun and informative to watch! We'll be hearing from:
Jean Scrimgeour, Accountability Lab
Cynthia Mellon, Climate Justice Alliance
Jennifer Lentfer, Thousand Currents
This panel event will explore how Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) and other independent oversight bodies in the United States and around the world play a critical role in helping curtail corruption.
Speakers will share case studies from efforts in Albania, Afghanistan, and the United States for comparative, cross-country learning. In focusing on an exchanges of effective models for improved legal frameworks, tools, practices, and lessons learned (including through resources from the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions), this event seeks to strengthen the efforts of all participating bodies, and create a platform for ongoing peer-to-peer learning and collaboration globally to combat domestic and international corruption.
Working in energy and climate-related policy can be a hard and isolating job in DC, so come build fellowship and collaboration with others who work in this field. Join Climate Justice Alliance, as we share conversation, updates on important work, plus a few surprises. This is an excellent opportunity to share climate and energy policy work with each other and deepen our networks as we tackle difficult and complex issues.
Activists, researchers, policy experts, and lawmakers who are working to create a more just and sustainable world are all welcome. Feel free to share with your colleagues.
Drinks and snacks will be provided.
After a populist vote not too dissimilar to Trump's, Britain is soon to be leaving the European Union, on a promise to relaunch a new era of free trade.
Javier Ruiz from the UK-based Open Rights Group (ORG) is visiting DC and will give an update on the situation. This will be with a view to start building stronger relations between civil society groups in the US and the UK, in order to better deal with any issues raised by this renewed strategic convergence.
Join us as we hear from Innovation Network, an evaluation and research consulting firm that specializes in advocacy and public policy evaluation and maintains a diverse client portfolio in the areas of health and health equity, social justice, and theory of change and evaluation planning. Using cases from their work, they will share an overview of how advocacy evaluation is used within the nonprofit sector, introduce some key tools—along with their strengths and limitations—and open a discussion about how these tools and strategies may be used in different contexts.
Join the Web Foundation and EveryoneOn for a screening of the documentary film, ForEveryone.net, followed by an interactive discussion about the future of the web and what we can do to defend the web we want — both in the US and abroad.
In the last decade, there have been significant numbers of civil society organizations working on ensuring the government becomes more transparent and accountable in Nigeria, while promoting a culture of citizen participation and engagement. This presentation will look at the metamorphosis of these organizations and how they have challenged the status quo using online and offline technologies. It will also look at challenges in the near future, and how international organizations can support their work.