Our Operation

Since its establishment (in 2009) the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) tends to support the development of an informed and empowered society for democratic governance. 

 

In 2018-2021, IDFI was certified as equivalent to a U.S. public charity by NGOsource. The unique NGOsource ED repository allows US-based grantmakers to access IDFI’s existing legal analysis and ED certificate and issue grants to the organization with simplified procedures.

 

Through the process of organizational development, the IDFI leadership defined the following major strategic directions:

 

Open Government

 

One of the key priorities of the organization is to develop open government principles, which includes increasing access to public information and use of open data; promoting citizen engagement in policy development and supporting substantial and innovative open government reforms in Georgia.

 

To improve the quality of access to public information, IDFI conducts monitoring, awareness raising and advocacy activities, in frames of which IDFI publishes reports, studies, organizes various types of events and communicates its recommendations with relevant public institutions and stakeholders. In addition, to promote the use of open data, IDFI develops innovative platforms and organizes various campaigns and activities.

 

IDFI is also actively engaged in promoting citizen participation in the decision-making, budgeting and lawmaking processes on both central and local government levels.

 

In addition, IDFI actively supports the implementation of the Open Governance Partnership (OGP) principles and activities in Georgia and beyond her borders. IDFI backs the execution of OGP principles on the Governmental, legislative, regional and local levels based with cooperation to the Administration of the Government of Georgia, Parliament of Georgia, Supreme Council of Ajara and local self-governing and civil society organizations.

 

Fighting Corruption

 

One of the priorities of the organization is the fight against corruption. To this end, IDFI is involved in the development of anticorruption policy, within which, once every two years, it submits to the Secretariat of the Anti-Corruption Council the evidence-based recommendations and the commitments to be undertaken by the agencies in the strategic documents. At the same time, IDFI monitors the implementation of anticorruption policy documents and submits its views on the implementation of commitments to the Secretariat.

 

Raising public awareness is important for the effective fight against corruption, therefore IDFI carries out educational activities including the Educational Certification Program in Fighting Corruption. At the same time, the organization periodically publishes awareness-raising videos, analyses of international indexes and evaluations, etc.

 

IDFI actively cooperates with international anticorruption institutions, such as the Anti-Corruption Network of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD-ACN), the Council of Europe Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), the Coalition of United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), the Eastern Partnership, etc.

 

Economic and Social Policy

 

IDFI is engaged in researching the social-economic policy and legislation in Georgia. The organization analyzes both Georgia’s development data and international best practice and, based on the latter, provides the Georgian government with recommendations on how to promote economic development and increase the level of wellbeing in Georgia.   

 

IDFI also works towards raising public awareness about the goals of Georgia’s social-economic development strategy and promoted citizen engagement in the process of its implementation. 

 

The organization monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of all of the major socio-economic programs run by the Georgian government.

 

Rule of Law and Human Rights

 

The activities within the scope of the rule of law and human rights direction are aimed at promoting independence, transparency, accountability and efficiency of the judiciary. The organization is actively involved in the process of monitoring and reforming the court system.

 

IDFI also aims to enhance human rights standards, improve the mechanisms for securing human rights and promote human rights-based approaches. Within the scope of this direction, the organization is also focused on improving transparency and accountability of the law enforcement system.

 

Local Government

 

One of the directions of IDFI is Local Government, which among other issues, aims to facilitate the decentralization process through:

 

 - Expanding the powers /competences of local self-government public institutions to resolve local problems;

 

 - Increasing transparency, accountability and effectiveness of municipalities;

 

 - Advancing financial and institutional capacity of municipalities to perform their functions properly.

 

To this end, IDFI a) conducts monitoring of the implementation of local government and decentralization strategies and action plans; b) facilitates dialogue and experience sharing between central and local governments; c) advocates for the improvement of legislation and practice of access to municipal data, and standards for proactive disclosure of public data in municipalities; d) supports the improvement of quality of municipal service delivery through new technologies, best practices and user-centered design/approaches and e) increases capacity of local stakeholders.

 

Media and Freedom of Expression

 

The main goals of the Media and Freedom of Expression Direction are to support the activities of media organizations and journalists in Georgia, to monitor the legislation regulating freedom of expression and related legislation, and to develop the relevant caselaw.

 

To achieve its goals and improve the existing standards for protection of media and freedom of expression, IDFI actively cooperates with media representatives and other stakeholders. In addition, IDFI conducts strategic litigation and targeted legal aid program.

 

Internet and Innovations

 

IDF has several specific objectives under its Internet and Innovations Direction: Promote efficient and effective e-governance ecosystem in Georgia; Promote effective, efficient and ethical use of innovative technologies (including Algorithms and artificial intelligence); Raise media and digital literacy; Increase access to the Internet and ensure digital freedoms.

 

To this end, IDFI periodically publishes different types of publications and policy recommendations on Internet and digital rights-related challenges and the ways to deal with them in Georgia and beyond.  In addition to research and policy analysis, IDFI conducts awareness raising campaigns and educational programs regarding the use of new technologies among various target groups.

 

Memory and disinformation studies

 

IDFI is working towards exposing and debunking the effects of propaganda and disinformation that go against Georgia’s strategic goals regarding the integration with NATO and the EU. IDFI regularly publishes articles, analytical papers, policy papers and briefs that are aimed at, on the one hand, informing the society about propaganda and, on the other hand, providing recommendations to the government about how to deal with this problem.  

 

For the purpose of combating propaganda, IDFI is collaborating with government agencies, partner local and international organizations, educational and academic institutions.

 

With the aim to help the country build a democratic future, IDFI analyzes academic and archival documents in order to contribute to the study of Georgia’s recent history- the Soviet past. IDFI works on opening the Sovietepoch archives and make archival documents available to the public.

 

IDFI is also actively involved in identifying the victims of Soviet repressions and is helping their families with legal disputes.  The organization aims to research and preserve memory of the past, and to inform the population about the crimes of the totalitarian regime.