Mapping aid to Uganda in real time OKCon, Berlin, 1st July 2011
#1: Get the data
What’s the problem?
Publish many times, use rarely
Publish Once, Use Often
The problem Lots of information in lots of different places Of varying quality... Different formats / classifications; not compatible / comparable Often not current or forward looking
Why do we need this data?
Accountability Of the $32 billion pledged by the US for 2001-2008, less than 20 percent ($6 billion) is recorded in the government’s aid database. That means Afghans have no way of knowing what’s happening with the other $26 billion the US has been spending in their country.
Coordination Donors are funding approximately 265 different aid projects in Sierra Leone. Many projects implemented unbeknownst to the government Aid is 186% of GNI in Sierra Leone (2008)
Predictability In Ethiopia, a US implementing partner distributed 20 million malaria bed nets throughout the country that will need to be replaced in three years. Not knowing whether it will receive funding from the US or how much to expect makes this kind of longer-term strategic planning nearly impossible for the government.
Aid Dependency Some of the most heavily aid dependent states are post-war countries Aid represents, as a proportion of government expenditure: 197% in Afghanistan (2008) 147% in Sierra Leone (2004) 95% in Rep. Congo (2005) 89% in Central African Republic (2004)
Aid is 197% of government expenditure in Afghanistan (2008)
For every $100 the government spends, donors spend about $200. BUT: how much of it reaches the country? Peace Dividend Trust report (2009): Of the approximately $2.1bn in the sample, an estimated 37.6% or $788m entered the Afghan economy.
Towards a common standard It’s not a silver bullet – but it’s hard to see how aid effectiveness can be delivered without aid transparency Commitments under AAA and to deliver on PD Key vehicle: International Aid Transparency Initiative Donor-led initiative to publish information in a standard, comparable format 8 EU Member States are signatories to IATI
Set up in Accra, Ghana in September 2008 20Signatories African Development Bank, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Commission, United Nations Development Programme, Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation, Hewlett Foundation, Global Fund Australia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK 2 Observers France, US
20 partner countries have endorsed IATI Sierra Leone Liberia Bangladesh Honduras Republic of Congo Democratic Republic of Congo Ghana Rwanda Indonesia Nepal Viet Nam Papua New Guinea Moldova Montenegro Colombia Burkina Faso Malawi The Dominican Republic Syria Lebanon
Where we’re at now 9th February – Standard agreed 28th January – DFID published all its projects to IATI 1st April – Hewlett Foundation published all its projects to IATI May – World Bank published all its projects to IATI for 2010
A project in DFID’s project-level database
The same DFID project in the IATI XML format
Hewlett Foundation’s IATI data
How are the donors doing? AidWatch Report: aid transparency Results so far, for 25 European donors
Challenges for IATI Still some questions unanswered Recipient budget identifier field still TBD: so not yet linked to recipient country budgets. Voluntary... Members and observers represent over 2/3 of all ODA, but a lot of aid left out! How many signatories will implement? Optional components – not all fields are compulsory, so how many will be used?
Alternatives to IATI OECD’s CRS / CRS ++ High quality statistics; data verified by OECD Not detailed enough; not timely (latest is 2009) Bilateral initiatives
What’s next? More donors publishing their data to IATI – probably at least another 6 before November/December (at HLF4) IATI standard starts to get data fed through it; let’s see how it works People start to use IATI data!
#2: Use the dataMapping aid to Uganda’s budget
1. Collecting the data Overseas Development Institute spent 6 months collecting data for aid expenditure in Uganda from 2003-2007 They sent a survey to donors asking what they had spent (and were spending). This was pre-filled with what the donors had already told the Ugandan government they were spending.
1. Collecting the data Key finding: Double the amount of aid in the country, compared with what the government knew about
2. Processing the data ODI spent about another 6 months manually mapping this aid data to the Ugandan government’s budget.
2. Processing the data Publish What You Fund spent another 3 months getting the data into a useful format Flattening 5 tables (matching up columns) Normalising the data Standardising currency (Ugandan Shillings) Removing duplicates and double-counting Dealing with budget support
Aid and domestic spending in Uganda
3. Conclusions It shouldn’t take 15 months to find out what’s being spent in Uganda On Education On Health Etc. The good news: Soon (hopefully!) it won’t.
#3: Mapping aid to Uganda’s budget ...automatically?
Using IATI Data IATI will (eventually) allow us to do this in real time and automatically. Mapping (DAC/DFID/WB sectors, recipient country budgets) is the biggest thing that’s currently missing. Data only began to be released quite recently – so early days. But, already some interesting developments
3. Using IATI Data
Other works in progress AidData.org shows data from the OECD’s CRS database. CRS is always at least 1 year out of date, but the data is still interesting for looking backwards AidData will be publishing in the IATI format in the next few weeks OpenSpending.org shows spending data, mostly of national budgets. A pilot has already been completed with some IATI data. Hopefully will be visible in next few weeks.
So, what next? More donors need to publish their aid information in the IATI format. If they can’t publish yet, they should at least sign the International Aid Transparency Initiative, to indicate their future intentions. More partner countries need to endorse IATI. More people need to sign the campaign to Make Aid Transparent.