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Technology for Transparency: Five New Cases, With More to Come!

Global Voices has launched a new initiative to track emerging models of the innovative use of technology for government transparency and accountability.

by Rebekah Heacock On November 23, 2010

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The Technology for Transparency Network is thrilled to announce the start of the publication of our second phase of research. Beginning with five cases — Accountability Initiative in India, Amatora mu mahoro in Burundi, Democrator.ru in Russia, Excelências in Brazil, and Mam Prawo Wiedzieć in Poland — we will be posting approximately 30 new cases over the coming weeks.

We’re also excited to announce a new feature on the Technology for Transparency site: over the summer, we’ve revised the way we categorize our case studies to make exploring the site and browsing the interviews more engaging. The projects we interviewed are complex and multifacted: for example, Dinero y Política (Money and Politics) in Argentina focuses on campaign finance; however, because of the type of technological tools it uses and its approach to financial data, it could also be considered an example of budget monitoring.

Our new categorization system lets visitors to the site explore the case studies through four different lenses:

  1. The actor(s) whose actions the projects target (for example, the legislative branch of government).
  2. The function(s) said actors perform (for example, elections, budgets, or government service delivery).
  3. The type of technology tools they use (for example, mobile tools or data collection tools).
  4. The project’s scale (national, municipal, etc.).

The “Quick Look” section at the top of each case study lists the categories for that case — have fun clicking around to see what other projects fall into those categories!

The Quick Look feature at the top of each case study lets you browse our case studies by multiple categories.

We welcome your feedback on these cases, and the cases we’ll be publishing throughout the month. Please feel free to leave comments on individual interviews, to message us on Twitter (in @techtransparent in English; @transparentech in Spanish/Portuguese), or to drop us a line on our Facebook page. We look forward to hearing from you!


Updated November 17, 2010

The Techonology for Transparency Network has eight new case studies online, with lots more to come over the next few weeks. The case studies that have been posted so far are:

Accountability Initiative
Accountability Initiative researches and creates innovative tools to promote transparency and accountability in India’s public services.

Amatora mu Mahoro
Amatora mu Mahoro (“Peaceful Elections”) is an Ushahidi-based project created to monitor Burundi’s 2010 elections.

Association for Democratic Reforms
ADR India works to monitor national elections through country-wide SMS and helpline campaigns and an informational website.

Democrator.ru seeks to empower citizens by helping them collectively send petitions and inquiries to government bodies.

Excelências fights corruption in the Brazilian government by publishing data about politicians and government activities online.

Golos (Voice) has introduced several online tools for better election monitoring in Russia.

Mam Prawo Wiedzieć
Mam Prawo Wiedzieć helps Polish citizens access information about their elected representatives in an easy, user-friendly way.

Pera Natin ‘to!
Pera Natin ‘to! (It’s Our Money!) encourages Filipino citizens to report times when they are asked for bribes.

In addition to continuing to post new case studies (you can subscribe to our case study feed via RSS), we’ll also be publishing our final report on both phases of the project by the end of the month. In the meantime, check out @techtransparent and our Facebook page for daily updates and our podcasts for interviews with the project leaders!

This article originally appeared on Global Voices Online and Jackfruity.com

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