Projects

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Project Donor Period Budget Contract
Empowered Civil Society and Enhanced Beneficial Ownership Transparency Standards for Good Governance International Visegrad Fund 2020-2021 EUR 34,902

 

 

 

Project Title: Empowered Civil Society and Enhanced Beneficial Ownership Transparency Standards for Good Governance
Supported by: International Visegrad Fund 
Grant Number: 220203362
Budget: EUR 34,902
Duration: October 1, 2020 – September 30, 2021
Partner Organizations: KohoVolit.eu (Czech Republic and Slovakia), K-Monitor Public Benefit Association (Hungary), ePaństwo Foundation (Poland)

 

Background

 

Despite Georgia’s success in fighting against petty corruption, it still has shortcomings in fighting against elite corruption. As it is acknowledged globally, beneficial ownership transparency is a crucial component for combating high and international corruption. While the registry of the beneficial ownership of the companies registered abroad does not exist in Georgia, foreign and offshore companies often hold significant assets in Georgia (real estate, capital, etc.) and participate in public procurement. With regard to Visegrad countries, Slovakia was one of the first countries of the European Union, which implemented a public register of beneficial ownership. While other countries also adopted respective laws/regulations in order to implement the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (Directive 2015/849/EU). Studying and comparing legislation and practices of these countries in this regard will be a useful experience-sharing for Georgia. Apart from existing transparency standards, civil society and media can play a critical role in enhancing government accountability. However, there is a lack of systemic public scrutiny over government activities in Georgia, as only a handful of media or civil society organizations have relevant skills to perform effective watchdog functions. Activists as well as the broader society do not have enough skills for obtaining and processing public data, as well as using online and offline (international) tools for holding the government accountable.

 

Project Objectives

 

IDFI, together with its partners from V4 countries, aims to support Georgian public to effectively monitor the government as well as enhance availability of public data on offshore companies.

 

To this end, the project plans to:

 

1) Study and advocate beneficial ownership transparency standards in Georgia and V4 countries;

 

2) Increase capacity of journalists, CSOs and activists through enhancing their oversight skills and promote monitoring government spending.

 

Such holistic approach will significantly improve the environment for watchdog community through advocating publication of more public data, including data about beneficial owners, enriching their professional skills and fostering cooperation between CSOs, journalists and activists.

 

Project Activities

 

1. Workshop on beneficial ownership transparency standards

2. Preparing toolkit on international investigative platforms, including on beneficial owners

3. Practical training/Workshop

4. Preparing joint regional study on beneficial ownership transparency legislation and practice in Georgia and V4 countries

5. Mentorship/Consultation for journalists/activists/CSOs/watchdogs

6. Contest of analytical reports/articles

7. Preparing Datasets and Update of DataLab.ge

8. Preparing visualizations / informative videos

9. Preparing analytical/investigative articles

10. Final Presentation

 

Project timeline and Budget

Grant agreement

The project aims to support the Georgian public to effectively monitor the government as well as enhance the availability of public data on offshore companies.

 

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Monitoring Covid-19 related public spendings and human rights protection during the state of emergency and after European Union 2020-2021 EUR 59,960

 

Project Title: Monitoring Covid-19 related public spendings and human rights protection during the state of emergency and after
Funded by: European Union
Project Number: ENI/2020/417-626
Total Budget: EUR 59,960  
Duration: July 22, 2020 – July 21, 2021

 

Background

 

Due to the state of emergency and COVID-19 related regulations, the Government of Georgia (GoG) is entitled to perform its duties bypassing important accountability mechanisms and restricting several human rights. Moreover, GoG has announced a 3.5 bln anti-crisis plan which will be directed  towards the social support of citizens, business recovery and health care. Also, the StopCov Fund was established, through which individuals and companies can donate money to overcome the coronavirus crisis. As of now, 133 million is raised. In addition, donor organisations have announced readiness to provide Georgia with $3 bln, aimed at assisting the economic recovery of the country. Therefore, conducting effective civic monitoring over public spendings and human rights restrictions is important to ensure government accountability in its efforts to fight against the pandemic. 

 

The measures taken by the government to fight against the coronavirus create the risk of disproportionate restriction of human rights. In general, the most serious breaches of human rights take place in situations of proclaimed state of emergency and states may be inclined to use their power of derogation for other purposes or to a larger extent than is justified by the exigency of the situation. During the crisis exercising effective external control over the government and monitoring the human rights situation gains more and more importance, because the risks of abuse of power by the authorities is especially high. 

 

The action will contribute to increasing government accountability regarding Covid-19 related public spending, implementation of the Government Anti-Crisis Plan, spending of StopCov Fund and allocation of donor support. In addition, the risks of disproportionate restriction of human rights during the COVID-19 crisis will be studied and mitigated.

 

Action Objectives

 

Overall objective

 

Contribute to increasing effectiveness and proportionality of actions to fight against the pandemic in Georgia

 

Specific objectives

 

1: Contribute to increasing government accountability, and transparency regarding Covid-19 related public spendings and Anti-Crisis Plan through monitoring, reporting, public awareness raising and advocacy efforts. 

 

2: Contribute to strengthening human rights standards through monitoring, advocacy and civil society engagement.

 

Action Activities

 

1. Monitoring Covid-related public spending, public procurements, implementation of the Government Anti-Crisis Plan, spending of StopCov Fund and allocation of donor assistance.

 

2. Monitoring the state of human rights during Covid-19 related restrictions.

 

3. Publish and disseminate monitoring results/recommendations online and offline during presentations and workshops

 

4. Hold 3 online public discussions 

 

5. Elaborate policy recommendations

 

6. Advocate policy recommendations through 2 presentations and 2 workshops

 

Action Results:

 

- Cases of alleged mismanagement of Covid-19 related public funds, donor assistance and ineffective implementation of Anti-Crisis Plan are revealed and remedied.

 

- The risks of disproportionate restriction of human rights during the COVID-19 crisis are mitigated.

 

- Public Awareness about revealed challenges and shortcomings related to Covid-19 related public spending and human rights protection is increased.

 

Project timeline and Budget

 

/public/upload/EU/Spec_Cond_signed - IDFI.pdf

Grant agreement

The project aims to increase the effectiveness and proportionality of actions to fight against the pandemic in Georgia.

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Promoting Greater Transparency and Ethical Standards of Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Georgia International Center for Non-for-profit Law, Inc. (ICNL) 2020 $19,999

 

Project Title: Promoting Greater Transparency and Ethical Standards of Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Georgia
Donor Organization: International Center for Non-for-profit Law, Inc. (ICNL)
Project Contract Number:
Netherlands.2020.IDFI.01
Total Budget:
 $19,999
Duration of the Project: July 01, 2020 – December 31, 2020

 

Context

The artificial intelligence can strongly support the reform of public administration in decision-making, service delviery, etc. However, its usage is also connected with some challenges related to insufficient transparency, accountability and data processing oversight mechanisms, as well as unfairness and inaccuracy. In addition, in countries like Georgia which lacks sufficient oversight mechanisms over law enforcement agencies and where independence of judiciary is still questionable, use of AI in decision-making may happen with the abuse of the right to personal life.

 

The use of face recognition system, developed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs needs to be studied, assessed and evaluated. The system began operation in June 2017, and works in combination with 400 CCTV surveillance cameras installed in Georgia's major cities, including the capital, Tbilisi. In addition, Tbilisi City Hall considers the possibility to introduce biometric facial recognition in the Tbilisi subway system and use the technology in its public transport system. Therefore, it is important to further explore this topic and cover the use of face recognition by Georgian governmental agencies, with the particular focus on the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Additionally, there is a need to raise awareness of the representatives of government institutions, as well as other stakeholders and general public, about the use, work and impact of AI in their everyday life. Most importantly, due to the novelty of the issue, they should be informed about transparency and ethical standards of using AI. Also, IDFI considers it of high importance to strengthen the capacity and support the engagement of the State Inspector’s Service in this regard.

 

Project Aim and Objectives

 

With this project, IDFI aims to promote development and implementation of greater transparency and ethical standards in using AI by governmental agencies in Georgia.

 

To this end, IDFI will:

 

 - Study and identify major challenges in using AI/face recognition systems by governmental agencies (with special focus on the Ministry of Internal Affairs);

 

 - Promote development and implementation of transparency and ethical standards in using AI/face recognition systems by public sector in Georgia.

 

 - Foster public discussion on the issue;

 

 - Raise awareness of all relevant stakeholders on the issue.

 

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

1) Initial workshop with representatives of governmental agencies using AI in decision-making.

 

2) Update methodology, submit FOI requests and (if needed) conduct interviews

 

 

3) Study the use of AI by Georgian governmental agencies - Based on the accumulated data, IDFI will prepare a study on the use of AI by governmental agencies in decision-making, to what extent they follow ethical and transparency standards, and whether there are any accountability mechanisms available in this process.

 

4) Elaborate policy recommendations and ethical and transparency standards - Based on the revealed challenges, IDFI will elaborate policy recommendations with the consideration of best international standards and practices in this regard.

 

5) Follow-up workshop - As soon as major findings and recommendations are elaborated and prepared, IDFI will conduct a follow-up workshop with the representatives of all relevant governmental agencies.

 

6) Final conference - Following the workshop, IDFI will finalize the study and recommendations. Once ready, documents will be translated and their printed versions will be prepared.

 

7) Training for target governmental agencies using AI – In order to raise awareness of representatives of governmental agencies about ethical and transparency standards of using AI, including face recognition system and automated decision-making, IDFI will organize a practical training.

 

8) Awareness raising about the topic – Apart from tailored training for public servants, IDFI will prepare an informational brochure for general public to raise citizen’s awareness about the topic.

 

Planned Activities and Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The project aims to promote development and implementation of greater transparency and ethical standards in using AI by governmental agencies in Georgia.

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Supporting the Functioning of the State Inspector Service Open Society Georgia Foundation 2020-2021 $49,890

 

 

 

Project titleSupporting the Functioning of the State Inspector Service

Donor organizationOpen Society Georgia Foundation

Project number: HR/12/20 – 21074

Project budget:49,890 US Dollars

Project duration:24 June 2020 –24May 2021

 

 

Project Description

 

The project aimsto identify gaps and challenges related to the investigative work of the State Inspector Service as well as to deliver relevant recommendations in order to support improvement of its functioning. The project team will study current legal framework, other legislative acts related to the State Inspector Service as well as conduct interviews with the prosecutors and investigators to further identify existing gaps and flaws in the legislation and practice. Within the scope of this project, study will be prepared which will include major findings of the monitoring as well as recommendations aimed at improving its work.  

 

Purpose of the Project

 

The project is aimed at supporting the functioning of the State Inspector Service, with a particular focus on its investigative function, through monitoring, research and advocacy. In addition, the goal of the project is to promote the improvement of the work of the State Inspector Service through identifying needs and challenges related to its functioning.

 

Project Activities

 

1. A study will be prepared on investigative work of the State Inspector Service, which will cover analysis of the national legal framework, international standards, public information and secondary sources, and the results of conducted interviews;

 

2. Two critical thematic foreign articles will be translated and published;

 

3. Two thematic media trainings will be held;

 

4. Working meetings  with the State Inspector Service, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Prosecutor’s Office and Parliament;

 

5. Public presentation of the study.

 

 Planned Activities and Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The project is aimed at supporting the functioning of the State Inspector Service, with a particular focus on its investigative function, through monitoring, research and advocacy.

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Develop Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the City-Halls of Telavi and Lagodekhi Municipalities USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, TETRA TECH 2020 GEL 40,970

 

 

Project Title: Develop Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the City-Halls of Telavi and Lagodekhi Municipalities

Donor Organization: USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, TETRA TECH

Project Contract Number: GGI-SUB-042

Total Budget: 40,970 GEL

Duration of the Project: 23 April 2020 – 31 August 2020

 

 

Objectives

 

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Telavi and Lagodekhi City-Halls against the threat of corruption.

 

Specific objective of this assignment is to support Telavi and Lagodekhi City-Halls in:

 

1) Development of Integrity and Transparency Strategy, Action Plan and monitoring framework; 

 

2) Capacity building of the relevant staff on integrity and transparency to apply anticorruption measures in practice.

 

 

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

- Development of a detailed methodology

 

- Development of a detailed work plan

 

- Conduct a comprehensive situational analysis

 

- Preparation of Situation Analysis Report and Recommendations

  

- Development of Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Conduct Public Discussion

 

- Finalizing Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Development of a Training Module

 

- Conduct a capacity building activity

 

Project Timeline

 

Contract

 

Budget

Grant agreement

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Telavi and Lagodekhi City-Halls against the threat of corruption

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Developing Open Data Practices in the City Halls of Gori, Lagodekhi, Ozurgeti, Senaki, Telavi and Zugdidi Municipalities USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD 2020 GEL 70,171.50

 

 

 

Project Title: Developing Open Data Practices in the City Halls of Gori, Lagodekhi, Ozurgeti, Senaki, Telavi and Zugdidi Municipalities
Donor Organization: USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD
Project Contract Number: GGI-SUB-041
Total Budget: 70,171.50 GEL
Duration of the Project: May 1, 2020 – August 31, 2020

 

Project Objectives

 

Specific objectives of the Project are to:

 

1. Identify specific needs of Gori, Lagodekhi, Ozurgeti, Senaki, Telavi and Zugdidi Municipalities in connection with collection, processing and publishing open data.

 

2. Review an existing Open Data Manual in Georgia and tailor it down to the Municipalities’ needs.

 

3. Develop training agenda together with training material package based on the needs identified.

 

4. Conduct robust trainings of relevant staff of the Municipalities aimed at development of Open Data

  

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

- Prepare a detailed methodology

 

- Prepare of detailed work plan and communicate with municipality representatives

 

- Conduct   situational   analysis   in connection with open data collection, processing and publication practices (situational  analysis  process  among  other elements should also envisage focus group meetings with different stakeholders);

 

- Based on findings of situational analysis and international   best   practices   develop   situational analysis reports together with recommendations tailored to the individual needs of Municipalities

 

- Update Open Data Manual

 

- Develop training module and materials

 

- Conduct capacity building activities for the relevant staff of 6 City Halls to successfully collect, process and publish open government data in practice.

 

- Develop and submit all deliverables in the final form including the final report summarizing work conducted and results achieved

 

Planned Activities and Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

An overall objective of the project is strengthening good governance in Gori, Lagodekhi, Ozurgeti, Senaki, Telavi and Zugdidi Municipalities through improving their understanding on the open data policy.

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Enhancing Transparency of the Judiciary in Georgia East West Management Institute (EWMI)/Promoting Rule of Law in Georgia (PROLoG) 2020-2021 $33,137

 

 

Project title: Enhancing Transparency of the Judiciary in Georgia

Donor organization: East West Management Institute (EWMI)/Promoting Rule of Law in Georgia (PROLoG)

Project number: G-1720-20-211-3024-20

Project budget: 33,137 USD

Project duration: 24 April 2020 – 23 January 2021

 

Project summary

 

The project is related to studying transparency of the judiciary through research and monitoring. Within the scope of the project, IDFI will study international standards, national legislation and practice as well as monitor court websites. Particular focus will be made on court statistics, proactively published information and accessibility of court decisions. Within the scope of the project, IDFI will study what kind of information is statistically processed in the judiciary and what are the challenges in this regard. As a result of research and monitoring, existing gaps will be identified and relevant recommendations will be prepared, which will be reflected in a final report.

 

Purpose of the project

 

The main purpose of the project is to enhance transparency of the judiciary, and advocacy of changes in legislation and practice.

 

Objectives of the project

 

- Delivering a comprehensive study on transparency of the judiciary (with a particular focus on court statistics, proactively published information and access to court decisions), identifying existing challenges and gaps;

 

- Delivering recommendations regarding enhancing transparency of the judiciary taking into account international standards and best practices;

 

- Advocacy of prepared recommendations.

 

Project Timeline

 

Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The main purpose of the project is to enhance transparency of the judiciary, and advocacy of changes in legislation and practice

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Ensuring Legal Safeguards for Digital Rights in Georgia Counterpart International 2020 GEL 110,695

 

 

Project Title: Ensuring Legal Safeguards for Digital Rights in Georgia
Donor Organization: Counterpart International
Project Contract Number:AID-OAA-LA-11-00008
Total Budget: 110,695 GEL (34,964 USD)
Duration of the Project: April 15-August 28, 2020

 

Background

 

Internet is regarded as free in Georgia. According to the Freedom House recent reports, the Internet has been free since 2012. However, blocking of international platforms such as Wordpress and Youtube in 2016, as well as recent suggested controversial amendments to the Law of Georgia “on Information Security”  demonstrate the need for engagement of civil society in ensuring legal safeguards for Internet freedoms. Despite emerging security risks, it is important to find an accurate balance between security and digital freedoms, especially for Georgia which lacks sufficient civic oversight mechanisms over law enforcement bodies and where independence of judiciary is still questionable.

 

It is incremental to ensure that civil society perspective is adequately reflected and considered while modifying Georgia’s information security system and legislation. Taking into account best international practices and local challenges in terms of digital freedoms and information security are also important in this process. 

 

Objectives

 

Major goal is to ensure and strengthen safeguards and digital freedoms on the legislative level in Georgia.

 

To this end, the project has the following objectives:

 

- Find an accurate balance between digital freedoms and security;

 

- Identify major challenges and problems relevant for Georgia in this regard;

 

- Consider international practice and international standards in this regard;

 

- Propose and promote/advocate alternative version of information security system/legal framework proposed by the government. 

 

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

1.  Study of international practice/standards on cybersecurity environment, legal framework and institutional arrangement

 

2. Working on policy recommendations

 

3. Meetings with decision-makers and representatives of all relevant public institutions

 

4. Final conference

 

5. International expert and IDFI meeting with decision-makers

 

 Planned Activities and Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The project goal is to ensure and strengthen safeguards and digital freedoms on the legislative level in Georgia.

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Develop Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the City Hall of Senaki Municipality USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD 2020 GEL 30,065

 

                                                                                

 

 

Project Title: Develop Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the CityHall of Senaki Municipality

Donor Organization: USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD

Project Contract Number: GGI-SUB-040

Total Budget: 30,065 GEL

Duration of the Project: 25 March 2020 – 31 August 2020

 

Objectives

 

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Senaki City Hall system against the threat of corruption.

 

The specific objective of this assignment is to support Senaki City Hall in:

 

1) Development of Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy, subsequent Action Plan, together with indicators and monitoring framework; 

 

2) Capacity building of the relevant staff to successfully apply anti-corruption measures in practice.

 

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

- Development of a detailed methodology

 

- Development of a detailed work plan

 

- Conduct comprehensive situational analysis

 

- Preparation of Situation Analysis Report and Recommendations

 

- Presentation of findings and recommendations

 

- Development of draft Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Conduct Public Discussion

 

- Finalizing Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Development of a Training Module

 

- Conduct a capacity building activity

 

- Submission of final deliverables

 

 

Planned Activities

 

Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Senaki City Hall system against the threat of corruption

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Develop Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the CityHall of Zugdidi Municipality USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD 2020 GEL 44,025

                                                                    

 

 

Project Title: Develop Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy and Action Plan for the CityHall of Zugdidi Municipality

Donor Organization: USAID Good Governance Initiative in Georgia, Tetra Tech ARD

Project Contract Number: GGI-SUB-037

Total Budget: 44,025 GEL

Duration of the Project: 02 March, 2020 – 31 August, 2020

 

 

Objectives

 

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Zugdidi City Hall system against the threat of corruption.

 

Specific objective of this assignment is to support Zugdidi City Hall in:

 

1) Development of Building Integrity and Transparency Strategy, subsequent Action Plan, together with indicators and monitoring framework; 

 

2) Capacity building of the relevant staff to successfully apply anti-corruption measures in practice.

 

 

Project Activities

 

In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, IDFI will implement the following activities:

 

- Development of a detailed methodology

 

- Development of a detailed work plan

 

- Conduct a comprehensive situational analysis

 

- Preparation of Situation Analysis Report and Recommendations

 

- Presentation of findings and recommendations

 

- Development of draft Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Conduct Public Discussion

 

- Finalizing Strategy and Action Plan

 

- Development of a Training Module

 

- Conduct a capacity building activity

 

- Submission of final deliverables

 

 

Planned Activities

 

Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen resilience of Zugdidi City Hall system against the threat of corruption

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Core Support The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) 2020-2022 SEK 9,100,000

 

                         

 

 

Project Title: Core Support

Supported by: The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida)

Grant Number: No. 13382

Budget: SEK 9,100,000 (Swedish kronor)

Duration: January 1, 2020 - December 31, 2022

 

 

Objectives of the Core Activities

 

The overall objectives of the Core Activities are Supporting Democratic and Good Governance in Georgia through evidence-based research, monitoring and advocacy by a) Promoting Open Governance; b) Strengthening the Anti-Corruption System; c) Social and Economic Policy; d) Rule of Law; e) Facilitating the Decentralization Process; f) Supporting the Process of Democratic Transition in Georgia; g) Media and Freedom of Expression; h) Internet and Innovations.

 

 

Project Summary

 

Despite overall progress in terms of building a democratic state and improving the effectiveness, transparency and fairness of governance in Georgia over the past 20 years, these processes have slowed and are currently facing serious challenges, such as informal governance, concentration of power, lack of judicial independence, high-level corruption and lack of political will to continue with important reforms, as well as poverty, external political and economic pressure from the Russian Federation that negatively affects democratic processes in the country. Reputable international organizations as well as prominent Georgian civil society organizations have gone as far as to say that Georgia shows signs of state capture. While the Government of Georgia declares that country irreversibly keeps pro-Western, Euro-Atlantic, democratic course, these worrying trends show a clear necessity for civil society to focus on these direction and support Georgia’s democratic and pro-western development as much as possible within its competence.

 

Having 10 years of experience working on improving democratic processes and promoting the principles of good governance, IDFI intends to counteract the existing challenges facing democratic and good governance through evidence-based research, monitoring and advocacy. More specifically, IDFI will work towards key objectives of combating corruption, improving transparency of public institutions, increasing citizen engagement in decision-making processes, achieving higher standards of rule of law, promoting more inclusive economic policies, facilitating the democratic decentralization and the democratic transition processes, upholding media and human rights, and promoting innovations to solve outstanding problems.

 

To achieve these objectives, IDFI will work with all relevant public, private, and civil society stakeholders. The organization will also make active use of various national and international networks and platforms in order to achieve positive change in target areas. Finally, special attention will be paid to achieving results at scale, by engaging important cross-cutting issues, such as education, environment and gender.

 

Budget 


Contract

Grant agreement

The overall objectives of the Core Activities are Supporting Democratic and Good Governance in Georgia through evidence-based research, monitoring, and advocacy

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Promoting Open Governance Principles at the Parliament of Georgia and Supreme Council of Ajara (SCA). European Union (EU) 2019–2022 €290,000.00

   

 

 

Project Title:  Promoting Open Governance Principles at the Parliament of Georgia and Supreme Council of Ajara (SCA). It is part of a broader initiative of the EU-UNDP project - “Consolidating Parliamentary Democracy in Georgia”.

Funded by:  The European Union with a co-share from the Parliament of Georgia and SCA

Project Number: 00113526

Total Budget: EUR 290,000.00

Duration: November 11, 2019 – April 30, 2022

 

EU-UNDP project “Consolidating Parliamentary Democracy in Georgia” contributes to improved democratic governance in Georgia through strengthening the performance of the Parliament of Georgia and the Supreme Council of Autonomous Republic of Ajara (SCA) within the new context of constitutional and legislative framework.

 

In the framework of the project, UNDP is collaborating with the IDFI to promote open governance principles in the work of the Parliament of Georgia and SCA in order to enhance openness, transparency and accountability of the institutions, including through greater citizen engagement.

 

The cooperation aims at (1) enhanced public engagement in parliamentary processes through:

 

supporting the operation of the Permanent Parliamentary Council on Open Governance

 

supporting the Council in monitoring the implementation progress of Open Parliament Action Plans

 

supporting the Parliament in raising public awareness on openness reforms and promoting citizen participation in legislative processes

 

building the capacity of the Communications Teams of the Parliament on social network content management and tools

 

supporting the building and reinforcing partnerships between the Parliament and other OGP member parliaments

 

and (2) SCA’s increased institutional openness, transparency and citizen engagement through:

 

facilitating the institutionalization of a legislative openness mechanism in the SCA

 

providing support to the SCA’s working group on legislative openness

 

- supporting the SCA’s working group in developing and monitoring the implementation of openness action plans

 

The project targets: members and staff of the Parliament of Georgia and SCA, civil society organizations, youth, ethnic minorities, academia, media, and the public in general.

 

Contract

 

Budget

 

Planned Activities

Grant agreement

In the framework of the project, UNDP is collaborating with the IDFI to promote open governance principles in the work of the Parliament of Georgia and SCA in order to enhance openness, transparency and accountability of the institutions, including through greater citizen engagement.

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Contributing to PAR through Civic Monitoring and Engagement European Union (EU) 2019-2021 €499,435.55

 

Project Title: Contributing to PAR through Civic Monitoring and Engagement

Funded by: European Union

Implemented by: Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) and Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association (GYLA)

Project Number:ENI/2019/409-956

Total Budget: EUR 499,435.55; European Union: EUR 449,492; Partners Match: EUR 49,943.55 (IDFI - EUR 259,611.32 and GYLA - EUR 239,824.24)

Duration: October 10, 2020 – October 10, 2022

 

Background

 

Georgia launched the Public Administration Reform (PAR) in 2015 after signing the Association Agreement with the EU. The general goal of the reform is to improve the transparency, predictability, accountability and efficiency of the public administration of Georgia. For the past 4 years, successful implementation of PAR has been limited. According to Government of Georgia (GoG) PAR implementation monitoring results, 122 activities were assessed, out of which 55 were fully accomplished, 33 - mostly accomplished, 22 - partially accomplished, and 12 were not fulfilled. In addition to slow pace of implementation, several past obligations within the reform have been left unfulfilled for the most part of PAR’s existence. For example, an integral part of PAR, adoption of a separate Law on Freedom of Information has not been fulfilled, despite it being part of the reform since 2015.

 

Generally, PAR lacks ambitious reforms, especially in the areas of transparency and accountability. If the previous PAR action plan included the national anti-corruption action plan, the current one omits this important element. Local governments are not part of PAR to the extent they should be and regional CSOs are not engaged in the oversight of the reform. Also, public participation and oversight in the implementation of PAR has been one of the weakest links of the reform, which hinders its successful implementation. The need to improve regional engagement and participation has been recognised by the Government in its Programme 2018-2020.

 

In order to ensure that the third PAR action plan is implemented to the greatest extent possible and that the work is done to prepare for future improvement of the reform, implementing organizations (IDFI, GYLA, and regional CSOs) plan to promote civil society engagement in the monitoring and revision of the Public Administration Reform through innovations, capacity building and multi-stakeholder dialogue.

 

Action Objectives

 

The action aims to promote the implementation of the Public Administration Reform through innovations, capacity building, multi-stakeholder dialogue and civil society engagement in monitoring and revision of the PAR Action Plan.

 

Specific Objectives of the action are the following:

 

1. Monitor the implementation of PAR through an innovative, inclusive approach

 

2. Strengthen capacity of local CSOs to better contribute to oversight and implementation of PAR

 

3. Facilitate PAR revision process through multi-stakeholder discussion and sharing of best practices.

 

Action Major Activities

 

IDFI and GYLA will monitor the implementation of Public Administration Reform, with particular focus on 4 components: policy development, accountability, public finance management and service delivery in order to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the implementation process, allowing for evidence-based revision. The assessment will serve as an alternative monitoring report, complementing and verifying the report of the GoG. Once unfulfilled commitments are identified, the project team will examine the principal reasons of failure and propose ways of addressing them. These observations will then be used by the implementing organizations for the revision of PAR and its action plan.

 

A single interactive and dynamic monitoring platform will be an integral part of the monitoring process. Monitoring and research results will be stored on this platform. For this purpose IDFI will create an online monitoring platform - PAR Tracker, that will grant the public and all interested stakeholders ready access to comprehensive information about PAR implementation, as well as means to engage in the monitoring process.

 

GYLA will train 11 local CSOs in at least 6 cities in Georgia (Akhmeta, Batumi, Kutaisi, Zugdidi, Poti and Marneuli), four of which have the self-governing status, while the fifth and sixth are populated by ethnic minorities (Muslim Kists in Akhmeta and Azerbaijanis in Marneuli). After the trainings, GYLA will select CSOs in each city via a competition, and issue small grants to them to assess implementation of PAR reform at local level and identify shortcomings and opportunities through public discussions and workshops with the participation of all relevant local stakeholders.

 

In an effort to facilitate PAR reform revision process, IDFI will study best practices on the most problematic issues identified by PAR Tracker and elaborate policy recommendations, which will be communicated to all relevant stakeholders and decision-makers through workshops and roundtable discussions. IDFI will also make active use of its media network to raise awareness about the reform, in an effort to stimulate public demand for more ambitious reform commitments. Finally, at the end of the project, IDFI and GYLA will hold a conference to gather all relevant stakeholders to advocate for improvements and ambitious commitments for the future of Public Administration Reform.

 

The logic behind the action is that by creating an online platform for monitoring PAR, CSOs which are part of the PAR Council will be equipped with an effective common monitoring tool, and other CSOs, not part of the process, with area specific expertise will be given the opportunity to contribute to the reform. The PAR tracker will act as a bridging mechanism allowing target groups and beneficiaries to share their feedback and concerns with public institutions that are responsible for policy making, service delivery and PAR implementation.

 

This systemic and innovative approach to monitoring will help identify all key challenges facing the reform. IDFI and GYLA will then develop evidence-based recommendations to counter these challenges by consolidating the feedback gathered through the PAR Tracker as well as studying best international practices. Finally, the recommendations for how to revise PAR will be advocated using all relevant channels.

 

Activity Plan

 

Project Budget 

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The action aims to promote the implementation of the Public Administration Reform through innovations, capacity building, multi-stakeholder dialogue and civil society engagement in monitoring and revision of the PAR Action Plan.

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Enhancing Openness of State Archives in Former Soviet Republics and Eastern Bloc Countries Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation 2019-2020 $78,980.64

 

 

Name of Project: Enhancing Openness of State Archives in Former Soviet Republics and Eastern Bloc Countries

Donor Organization: Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation (OSI)

Total Grant Amount: $78,980.64

Project Number:  OR2019-58650

Period of Performance: June 1, 2019 – May 31, 2020

 

Project Goal

 

Encourage the rethinking of Soviet and totalitarian past by fostering research and promoting the openness of state archives in post-Soviet and post-socialist countries. This goal is to be attained by two main objectives. Firstly, by expanding the ranking of the openness of Soviet and totalitarian archives to the Eastern Bloc countries. During the conference planned within the framework of the project meeting with new partners and experts of the project will be held. Additionally, a thorough study on the issues of post-Soviet space in terms of archive openness will be conducted to have clear vision on how and where to advocate for more openness.

 

Objective 1. Promoting the openness of state archives by expanding the State Archive Openness Rating. One of the main objectives of the project is expanding the network of NGOs to cover additional countries. The network will aim to launch active national and international advocacy campaigns to achieve changes in archives. Also, involved scholars will provide studies based on archival research and articles about Soviet past. 

 

Objective 2. Facilitating Soviet and Totalitarian Memory Studies. In order to attract public interest towards archives and Soviet period, IDFI plans to expand the scope of the project and implement memory studies based on archival documents on Soviet totalitarian period. We aim to work in two following directions: Politics of Memory and Discourse on Memory.

 

In order to lay a foundation where relevant stakeholders are more receptive to change, IDFI will encourage partner scholars to write easily understandable articles and blogs for the broader public on various topics of interest from the Soviet period which will be based on archival documents. Well-known experts will be invited to write articles in order to contribute to our online resource –www.open-archives.org. The project will also involve young scholars to write articles alongside invited experts. The project team will also identify important articles already written on relevant topics and translate them in order to increase their reach. Finally, the project team will organize important information revealed as a result of archival work and prepare easily digestible visualizations and short videos to be disseminated in target countries.

 

Contract 

 

Planned Activities 

 

Project Budget

 

Grant agreement

Project goal is to encourage the rethinking of Soviet and totalitarian past by fostering research and promoting the openness of state archives in post-Soviet and post-socialist countries. 

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Development of Educational Certification Program in Fighting Corruption Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation 2019-2020 $80,397.42

Type of grant activity: Development of Educational Certification Program in Fighting Corruption

Donor institutions: Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation (OSI) with co-funding from Open Society Georgia Foundation (OSGF)

Total grant amount: USD 80,397.42 (OSI - USD 65,397.42; OSGF - USD 15,000)

Project number: OR2019-58650

Implementation period: June 1, 2019 – November 30, 2020.

 

Project Goals

 

The impact of the project will be to develop and sustain a community of professionals and activists, who will engage with corruption prevention, corruption risk management and with shedding light on facts of individual and systemic corruption.

 

The first goal of the project is to develop an inter-disciplinary curriculum on corruption, its history and root causes, risk mitigation at policy development level, compliance within public and private organizations, the most modern corruption trends and methods of uncovering corrupt arrangements through open source investigation, whistleblowing and other methods.

 

The second goal of the project is to recruit a group of course participants with various backgrounds and a motivation to engage with the course, dedicate time and take an active part in the educational process through learning and sharing their thoughts, ideas and experiences; and to deliver a high-quality course.

 

The third goal of the project is to develop a strong alumni network of corruption fighters, who will continue their active work in their respective fields, and at the same time engage with periodic alumni activities, whether it will be attending an alumni gathering; organizing a joint research project; or exploring joint learning, or knowledge sharing opportunities.

 

Expected Impact

 

Short-term impact: development of a cutting-edge inter-disciplinary certification program;, engaging the prominent local and international experts in delivery of the course; graduating the first cohort and launching alumni network among graduates.

 

Medium-term impact: impacting attitude of course participants by equipping them with the necessary knowledge and skills, which will enable them to act as role models and change agents at their work, or through various projects that they will chose to engage with.

 

Long-term impact: contribute to development of a community of like-minded progressive professionals, who are capable of recognizing risks for corruption and preventing corruption, as well as who will uncover corrupt practices and form a critical public opinion about the real human cost to corruption.

 

 

Planned Activities

 

Project Budget

 

Contract 

 

Grant agreement

The impact of the project will be to develop and sustain a community of professionals and activists – corruption hunters, who will engage with corruption prevention, corruption risk management and with shedding light on facts of individual and systemic corruption.

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Studying How Major International Anti-corruption Platforms Promote Transparent & Accountable Public Procurement in Georgia and Eurasia Region Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation 2019-2020 $51,456.96

 

Name of Grant Activity: Studying how major international anti-corruption platforms promote transparent and accountable public procurement in Georgia and the Eurasia region

Donor Organization: Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation (OSI)

Total Grant Amount: 51,456.96 USD

Project Number: OR2019-58650

Period of Performance: 1 June 2019 – 30 November 2020

 

Project Description and Goal

 

The goal of the project is to secure Georgia’s democratic state-building achievements by tackling the growing problem of corruption, with a particular focus on corruption-proofing the public procurement system.

 

To pursue this agenda on the national level IDFI will work to maximize the effect of such international anti-corruption platforms as the Open Government Partnership (OGP), Council of Europe’s Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), and Anti-Corruption Network of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD-ACN). IDFI will also look at Georgia’s National Anti-Corruption Strategy and Action Plan as a framework for assessing the Georgia public procurement related policies, to make sure the country fulfills its international obligations and reduce the scale of corruption in interests of Georgian population. IDFI will also continue its work of building an international network of CSOs working on public procurement and consolidating their efforts to make the voice of civil society heard by major national and international stakeholders and decision makers.

 

Objective 1 - Fortify the Georgian public procurement system against corruption by developing systemic improvements. In order to ensure that the ongoing legislative reform does not lose sight of the practical aspects of how public procurement is run in Georgia, IDFI will analyze the most prominent corruption loopholes of the Georgian public procurement system and develop policy papers, in cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, offering best practice and evidence-based, systemic improvements to the system of public procurement.  

 

Objective 2 - Amplify the effect of all major anti-corruption platforms in Georgia, with a focus on improving the public procurement system. IDFI intends to harness and amplify the positive effect various international anti-corruption platforms have on Georgian reform environment in order to secure tangible anti-corruption commitments and actions from relevant state actors. Particular attention will be paid to securing commitments that tackle corruption in the Georgian public procurement system.

 

Project Activities

 

Objective 1

 

- Elaborating policy proposals targeting specific corruption related loopholes in the Georgian public procurement system.

 

- Holding public discussions on each policy proposal developed as part of the project.

 

- Harnessing the Georgian public procurement reform to strengthen the TPPR international network of CSOs working on public procurement.

 

Objective 2

 

- Assessing the quality of implementation of Georgia’s anti-corruption commitments within the OGP National Action Plan (NAP) of 2018-2019.

 

- Assessing Georgia’s compliance with the National Anti-Corruption Strategy commitments.

 

- Assessing Georgia’s compliance with GRECO recommendations.

 

- Assessing Georgia’s progress on Implementing the OECD-ACN Recommendations andContributing to the latest  Round of Evaluation.

 

Planned Activities

 

Project Budget

 

Contract

Grant agreement

The goal of the project is to secure Georgia’s democratic state-building achievements by tackling the growing problem of corruption, with a particular focus on corruption-proofing the public procurement system.

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Good Governance for Georgia (3G) Luminate 2019-2021 $390,000

Project Title: Good Governance for Georgia (3G)

Supported by: LuminateGlobal Philanthropic Organization

Grant Amount: USD 390,000

Grant Term: January 1, 2019 – December 31, 2021

 

Project Description

 

Project aims at increasing public oversight of state institutions, and increasing transparency and accountability of the government of Georgia.

 

IDFI plans to accomplish this goal by conducting oversight activities related to monitoring of effective, responsible, transparent, ethical and accountable governance and public procurement activities, preparing investigative analyses, and increasing capacity of journalists, CSOs and activists to enhance their oversight skills and methods in the respective areas.

 

Initially, the project will pilot in Tbilisi (capital of Georgia) and gradually move to the rest of the country during the second and third years.  

The project will include the following activities:

 

- Promote anti-corruption agenda, access to public information, government transparency and accountability by preparing monitoring reports and in-depth analytical papers about implementation of fiscal policy at central and local government levels in Georgia;

 

- Based on IDFI’s practice, develop a practical toolkit about the use of open data and existing online and offline resources and mechanisms for government oversight;

 

- Hold practical trainings and workshops for the project’s target groups: journalists, local CSO representatives, activists and business sector representatives;

 

- Launch a monitoring process with the participation of trained journalists, CSO representatives and activists.

 

Project Budget 

 

 Contract

Grant agreement

Project aims at increasing public oversight of state institutions, and increasing transparency and accountability of the government of Georgia.

 

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