Making the United Nations more open and transparent - Thomas Melin


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UN-Habitat is leading the way with regard to transparency in the United Nations system. In this session, Thomas Melin, Head of External Relations at UN-Habitat talks about ongoing efforts to make UN-Habitat and the wider UN system more open and transparent.

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Making the United Nations more open and transparent - Thomas Melin

  1. 1. Making the United Nations more open and transparent Thomas Melin Head of External Relations, UN-Habitat
  2. 2. The problem with aid data
  3. 3. The solution
  4. 4. Towards a common standard International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) set up in 2008 at the High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Accra, Ghana. 192 publishers since 2011. Denmark United Kingdom Finland Netherlands Spain Sweden Northern Ireland European Union World Bank UN-Habitat UNDP UNOPS UN Women Action Aid Oxfam Handicap International Marie Stopes Norwegian Refugee Council
  5. 5. IATI registry
  6. 6. Open UN-Habitat Transparency Initiative Project to make UN-Habitat more transparent and open. Launched in 2011 Publishing financial and project information as open data. Funded by Sida. International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI).
  7. 7. Open UN-Habitat activities • Publishing IATI data • Internal policies and procedures • Database development • Website development • Staff training
  8. 8. Output: IATI data • September 2012 • 3rd UN Agency and 75th publisher overall • 80% of project portfolio published
  9. 9. Output: website
  10. 10. Challenges • Initial fear of transparency • Paper culture • Quality assurance • Project funding allocation • Updating of the database • Mapping data • Dealing with Global Projects
  11. 11. Leading on transparency in the United Nations UN-Habitat, UNDP and UNOPS held two UN-wide transparency workshops during 2013. Setting up a UN Working Group on Transparency. UN-Habitat held transparency workshops with UNEP and UNESCO in 2013. 9 UN agencies have published IATI.
  12. 12. ‘Urban Numbers’ website Aiming to collect the world’s urban statistics in one place. Publishing open data and presenting it using the latest digital visualization techniques. Statisticians and digital communications people working together. Hoping to establish a broad coalition of multilateral institutions, member states, academia, NGOs etc. Some funding available, but fundraising required.
  13. 13. “Wanted: A new data revolution” • A New Global Partnership • Report by the High Level Panel on the Post-2015 development agenda. • Will influence the new development goals after 2015. • Strong focus on development data and statistics. • Calls for improved data collection and dissemination. • Recommends the establishment of a Global Partnership on Development Data. February 2011 Knowledge Management Quick Wins
  14. 14. “ The revolution in information technology over the last decade provides an opportunity to strengthen data and statistics for accountability and decision-making purposes. There have been innovative initiatives to use mobile technology and other advances to enable real-time monitoring of development results. But this movement remains largely disconnected from the traditional statistics community at both global and national levels. The post-2015 process needs to bring them together and start now to improve development data. - The Report of the High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda
  15. 15. Thank you