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Friday, September 4 • 08:30 - 10:30
Collective Action against Corruption

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Whether through large-scale social mobilizations, as exemplified most vividly in the Arab Spring, or through numerous cases of bottom-up incremental change achieved through the concerted actions of citizens and their communities, the potential of civil society to challenge corrupt regimes has been confirmed repeatedly over the past decade.

However, we believe that one of the biggest challenges facing the future is how to harness the energy and potential of collective action by citizens and translate it into institutionalized participatory mechanisms to hold governments accountable and end impunity.

Therefore, this session will address the question of how to formulate, develop and implement context sensitive and sustainable mechanisms to enable people to undertake collective action against corruption.

The aim of this panel is to bring together practitioners with experience in the use of social accountability mechanisms as anti-corruption tools for an in depth discussion aimed at sharing what works in engaging and enabling the participation of civil society against corruption in a sustainable manner.

Our hope to produce the following:
a) An understanding of context sensitivity. What are the key elements from the local context that should be taken into account when tailoring social accountability mechanisms? (e.g. individualism/collectivism, perceptions of likelihood of retribution for denouncing corruption).
b) An understanding of what specific social accountability mechanisms work better for which contexts.

The panel comprised of representatives from UNDP, Transparency International, Integrity Action and Basel Institute on Governance will share on experiences and lessons learned in the development and application of methodologies to develop and adjust social accountability mechanisms to local contexts with the goal of maximizing citizen uptake and sustainability of the intervention.

The premise is that the best way to empower citizens is by developing institutional mechanisms to counter corruption that take into account:
a) The local norms and values that permeate social relations, and
b) How citizens view their interactions with the state and state officials and therefore how they understand and experience corruption.

This information may then be used to develop social accountability mechanisms that involve socially acceptable participation modes, that make sense and are easily accessible to users, and that are therefore also sustainable in the long run. Case study examples that will be discussed include the Philippines, Serbia, Ghana, Mexico and Tanzania, etc.

avatar for Elizabeth Hart

Elizabeth Hart

Consultant & Instructor, Independent and University of Washington
I work on a range of anti-corruption and development issues, from donor integrity policies to social accountability. At the moment I'm particularly interested in learning about groups and individuals who are doing innovative work in developing country settings to strengthen the accountability... Read More →


Jennifer Asuako

Programme Analyst, United Nations Development Programme

Irina Codrean

Co-founder, LaEtaj.md

Joy Saunders

Chief Executive Officer, Integrity Action

Session Coordinators
avatar for Aida Arutyunova

Aida Arutyunova

Programme Manager of Global Anti-Corruption Initiative (ACPIS), UNDP ACPIS

Friday September 4, 2015 08:30 - 10:30 GMT+08
Hall 9

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