Over the last 10 years, the legitimacy and effectiveness of one-size-fits-all models of development and top-down models of governance has been challenged. This has been seen most recently in the demands of citizens on the streets of North Africa, the Middle East and beyond – and through social media – for more open, transparent and accountable governance. “Open Development” represents a new vision of what development means, how it comes about and the role that external partners can play. Open Development, ultimately, is about people in developing countries having the information and resources that they need to hold their governments accountable and to make well-informed decisions to improve their lives.
As a stepping stone towards Open Development, ONE is pushing for greater transparency and accountability about what resources are available to be invested in poverty reduction, how those resources are invested and what results they achieve. Transparency and accountability will, we believe, help to ensure that resources (including but not limited to aid) are spent effectively to deliver improved results in health, agriculture, infrastructure and other issues that are key to the fight against poverty and for prosperity. Transparency can turbo-charge accountability, encouraging innovation, incentivizing behavior change, transforming political dynamics, and helping to ensure that resources are invested wisely to tackle poverty.
To promote greater transparency and accountability, ONE is working on a number of fronts, pushing for improved natural resource governance, greater transparency about budgets and aid, and encouraging donors to invest more in building the capacity of civil society organizations and other oversight institutions (parliaments, for example) so that they can make use of the information that transparency will unleash, in order to hold governments to account.
On natural resource governance, ONE is working with partners such as the Revenue Watch Institute, thePublish What You Pay Coalition and Global Witness , supporting the battle to make sure that Cardin-Lugar legislation is implemented in the US and that EU legislation makes it onto the books.
On budget transparency, ONE is working with partners including the International Budget Partnership,engaging with the Global Initiative on Fiscal Transparency as it seeks to develop and implement global norms on budget transparency and adding our energy to the Global Movement on Budget Transparency, Accountability and Participation.
On aid transparency, ONE is working with partners including Publish What You Fund and Transparency International, pushing to ensure that agreements reached at Busan are monitored and implemented and that the most is made of potential of the World Bank’s Open Aid Partnership.
And on civil society and oversight institutions, ONE is talking to the World Bank and others to encourage investments in the capacity of civil society and oversight institutions.
To drive progress on these various issues, ONE is focused on the G8, the G20 and the Open Government Partnership. ONE is also exploring the potential of new technologies as transparency and accountability game-changers, thinking about how best to tackle illicit financial flows, how to boost domestic resource mobilization in developing countries, and whether a set of post-2015 development goals might incorporate governance, transparency and accountability issues.
By campaigning for greater transparency and accountability, we aim to accelerate progress on poverty reduction and towards a future when people in developing countries have the information and resources that they need to hold governments accountable and to shape their own destinies in a future beyond aid.
Irresponsible multinational companies are lobbying hard against effective new European laws that would lift the lid on the trillions of dollars they pay to governments across Africa for their natural resources.
Responding to the UK's decision to join the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative, Adrian Lovett, Europe Executive Director at ONE said: “Today’s announcement is another step in the right direction by David Cameron in the fight against extreme poverty. Coming just six weeks after the historic political deal was reached in Europe on new rules requiring extractive companies to declare their payments to foreign governments, the implementation of EITI shows continued political will by the UK and France to support transparency in the extractive sectors both at home and abroad and sends a strong and clear message.
The ONE Campaign warmly welcomes a political deal reached this evening on new European rules requiring oil, gas, mining and forestry companies to declare the payments they make to foreign governments.