In the past 50 years there have been great successes in aid-funded programs. For instance, the number of children who die every year has decreased from 20 million to fewer than 8 million. Additionally, the proportion of people living in extreme poverty has declined by more than half. These significant successes can be attributed to the generosity that goes into humanitarian relief efforts.
In spite of the irrefutable evidence that aid is effective, opposition in many rich countries to foreign aid persists. Several organizations have therefore developed measures to increase transparency on how aid funds are invested.
Watchdog organizations include:
Publish What You Fund The global campaign for aid transparency.
Primarily an advocacy organization working with organizations from around the world, calling on donors to publish what they fund.
Transparency International The global coalition against corruption.
Working in nearly 100 countries to raise awareness of corruption, and involves governments, businesses and international organizations to develop effective programs to tackle it. This organization also publishes the Corruption Perceptions Index that measures the perceived levels of public sector corruption in 176 countries and territories around the world.
International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) Makes information about aid spending easier to access, use and understand.
Provides data on a registry in XML format that can be converted into databases, spreadsheets, web applications, printed documents or data visualizations.
OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) Better policies for better lives.
Collates and publishes data on aid flows from their 24 member countries and a number of international aid organizations.
AidData Open data for international development.
Augments data collected by the OECD DAC to create a more comprehensive and accessible database on aid projects.
A professional network of senior budget officials in African Ministries of Finance and/or Planning. CABRI’s main objective is to promote efficient and effective management of public finances, which fosters economic growth and enhances service delivery for the improvement of the living standards of African people.
International Budget Partnership (IBP) Open budgets. Transform lives.
Collaborates with civil society around the world to analyze and influence public budgets in order to reduce poverty and improve the quality of governance.
Aid Watch Just asking that aid benefit the poor
The Aid Watch blog is a project of New York University’s Development Research Institute (DRI). Their work is based on the idea that more aid will reach the poor the more people are watching aid.
OpenAid Public online monitoring for better development aid.
A project of the Open Knowledge Foundation Germany for transparency in development cooperation. OpenAid promotes the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) and implements data analysis projects.
Works to advance and defend the right to know in Europe and globally. They stand against excessive secrecy and believe that access to information is key to protecting human rights.
A non-profit capacity-building, advocacy, advisory and research group which works with more than 50 governments and international organizations worldwide.
Transparency and Accountability Initiative Empowering citizens to hold their governing institutions to account.
Brings together a wide range of organizations and projects aimed at promoting greater openness on the part of governments, companies and other institutions so that the public can hold them accountable.
These organizations collectively ensure aid funds are invested appropriately. With this level of accountability, contributors can be confident the world’s poor are receiving their assistance.
– Caressa Kruth
Sources: NY Times, Publish What you Fund, Transparency International, AidInfo, International Aid Transparency Initiative, AidData, OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC), Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative, International Budget Partnership, Aid Watch, OpenAid, Access-Info Europe, DFI, Transparency and Accountability Initiative
Photo: Make Aid Transparent Vimeo