This Anti-Corruption Helpdesk brief was produced in response to a query from the European Commission. The Anti-Corruption Helpdesk is operated by Transparency International and funded by the European Union.
Could you please provide an overview of literature and case studies regarding the advantages and disadvantages of sharing governance assessments with partner governments?
1 Transparency as the general principle
2 Challenges to disclosure
3 Case studies
It is common practice for external donors to conduct governance assessments in the countries they support with foreign aid. Such tools serve the purposes of risk assessments and quality assurance and help governments to better target aid.
There is a broad consensus that it is good practice to involve government counterparts in conducting such exercises and share the findings with the partner countries, not least to develop a sense of ownership of the findings and identify possible areas for reforms. In line with this approach, the 2005 Paris Declaration on aid effectiveness promotes partner governments’ ownership of development strategies and alignment of donor projects with local priorities. It underlines that diagnostic assessments are an important source of information both for donors and partner countries, and that mutually agreed assessment frameworks should be preferred and become an integral part of development strategies. However, in practice, assessed governments rarely participate in the assessment and the results are usually not shared widely.
Even though transparency should be the default option, the specificity of the context as well as the purpose of the donor assessment should always be considered. In some settings, the disclosure of assessments might be a source of conflict and tension. In such cases, partial disclosure can be considered, and results can selectively be made available.
AuthorsSofia Wickberg, Transparency International, [email protected]