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This tag is associated with 16 posts

Kenya-bound for more Uwezo research

I head off tomorrow for a few weeks of meetings and research in Kenya. I’ll join my collaborators, Lily Tsai and Dan Posner, and our project manager, Jessica Grody to continue our work trying to understand the impact of the Uwezo initiative. We’ll get started in Nairobi, and from there we’ll do some traveling around … Continue reading

Making budgets more transparent around the world

The international budget project has updated their website, and has posted a series of papers on the causes and consequences of budget transparency. One paper by Michael Ross finds that … among autocracies, greater oil wealth is correlated with less fiscal transparency, while greater non-fuel mineral wealth is paradoxically associated with greater transparency…There is some … Continue reading

Avoiding a twitter revolution in Swaziland

Various scholars and analysts will continue to debate the role of social media within the Arab Spring. But Swaziland’s King Mswati III isn’t taking any chances: According to the M&G, he’s planning to ban criticism on facebook and twitter. I am guessing that the little kingdom state probably doesn’t have the capacity to track down … Continue reading

Twaweza responds to Ugandan police seizure of calendars

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the Ugandan police’s seizure of Twaweza-produced calendars promoting active citizenship. This week,  Twaweza’s Uganda country director spoke out about the calendar’s intended message and why he believes the police should release the calendars. What reason did the police give to impound a consignment of Twaweza calendars? They say … Continue reading

Legal Resource Centre challenges S. African Secrecy Bill

George Bizos defended Nelson Mandela and other ANC luminaries during the Rivonia trials of the early 1960s. Now, he is putting forth a challenge to the so-called “secrecy bill,” authored by the current ANC government. Bizos, who works in the constitutional litigation unit of the Legal Resources Centre (LRC), argues that the bill contradicts the … Continue reading

Ugandan government impounds Twaweza citizenship calendars

Last Friday, the Ugandan government confiscated 700,000 calendars produced by Twaweza. As far as I know, they remain in police custody. The calendar was an effort to realize Twaweza’s mission to promote government accountability. Phrases such as, “who will change your world in 2012?” and photographs of various government officials were intended to provide information … Continue reading

Uwezo Uganda film on the value of education

Uwezo Uganda just released a short film on the dreams (of becoming president) and challenges (of going to school when burdened with responsibilities) of an 11-year-old boy named Kyosiga. Since the goal of this NGO is to inspire parents to place a higher premium on education, the intuition seems just right: Drama is a potentially … Continue reading

Information good for government accountability?

Really interesting post questioning the information-accountability link from Stuti Khemani and Phil Keefer In our (justifiable) enthusiasm for transparency, we rarely ask whether information provision leads private citizens to help themselves, thereby relieving governments of their responsibilities. If so, we may not be quite there (yet) in finding tools that improve government accountability… It’s easy … Continue reading

Trevor Manuel is my hero

Trevor Manuel was an anti-apartheid activist and community organizer, and detained several times under the old South African regime. Mandela appointed him as minister of trade and industry, and within two years switched him to minister of finance — a job he would hold for more than a decade. Manuel was remarkably successful, kept financial … Continue reading

Singing their way to ethnic peace in Kenya?

Kenyans have good reason to worry about ethnic violence in the next election — the track record is pretty dismal and the last election was particularly awful. A college choir is taking the matter into its own hands, as reported in the Daily Nation and they are going to various hotspots, preaching peace and also … Continue reading

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