This blog was written by Courntey Tolmie (R4D) and originally published for the Transparency and Accountability Initiative in September 2013.

If you ask any partner in any low- or middle-income country whether absenteeism or drug stockouts or quality of services are a problem, the answer you are likely to receive (with little hesitation) is ‘yes’. That response may be based on extensive quantitative analyses, but more likely it is just common knowledge.

This raises the...

This blog was written by Courtney Tolmie (R4D) and originally published for the Transparency and Accountability Initiative in September 2013.

‘Impact’ makes me cringe.

Not the actual process or the achievement of changing something, obviously. But the term. ’Impact’ has become a messy term, especially in the field of transparency and accountability. Unfortunately, we are going to have to grapple with it if we are going to make any progress in an intervention. Or an...

A community health volunteer weighs an infant in Indonesia

This blog was written by Courtney Tolmie (R4D) and originally published for the Transparency and Accountability Initiative in September 2013.

Several years ago, I was attending an advocacy training for partner organizations working on issues of transparency and accountability in Africa. The team leading the training began the session with a slide showing two scientists reviewing a complex econometric equation. At the end of the long line of variables, there was a bubble...

A researcher interviews a traditional birth attendant in Indonesia

This blog was written by Stephen Kosack (UW) and Archon Fung (HKS) and originally published for the Transparency and Accountability Initiative in June 2013.

How can providing information lead to more accountable and effective governance? In a previous post we discussed two possibilities: the confrontational approach, in which information empowers citizens and communities to prevent public officials from misbehaving; and the...

Village leaders participate in a community survey in Indonesia

This blog was written by Stephen Kosack (UW) and Archon Fung (HKS) and originally published for the Transparency and Accountability Initiative in June 2013.

Very few people in the world of transparency and accountability would claim that there is an automatic, one-to-one connection between the provision of information on one hand and the production of good things like governmental accountability, better public services, or less corruption, on the other. The question is how...