UNDP delivers on full transparency pledge

    Helen Clark, administrator of the United Nation Development Program. Photo by: UN Photo Geneva / CC BY-NC-ND

    The United Nations Development Program has made details on thousands of its projects — and their outcomes — available to the public, through its new portal, open.undp.org.

    Launched Nov. 29, the portal embodies the fulfillment of UNDP’s commitment to full transparency by 2013 “above and beyond international standards,” according to the agency.

    The site features comprehensive information, including income, expenses, activities and results, on more than 6,000 active projects in 177 countries and territories, along with those financially closed in 2011. And beginning 2013, UNDP will publish updates on its ongoing development projects quarterly.

    With the move, UNDP lives to its reputation as a transparency champion. It is a founding member of the International Aid Transparency Initiative and part of the IATI Secretariat.  

    UNDP’s efforts have not gone unnoticed. In an index released early last month, the agency ranked 10th among 72 funding organizations assessed by Publish What You Fund, moving from a grade of “fair” in 2011 to “good” in 2012.

    “We are committed to working in the open, and we will continue improving the quality, quantity, and timeliness of our reporting so that our partners can monitor their investments in fighting poverty, supporting human development, and securing a sustainable future for all,” said UNDP Administrator Helen Clark.

    The UNDP is also considered a trailblazer on the issue among U.N. agencies, some of whom have long drawn criticism for their lack of openness.

    But the transparency movement appears to have caught on within the U.N. system. In June, UNICEFannounced it will publish all its audit reports on the Internet starting later this year.

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    About the author

    • Eliza Villarino

      Eliza Villarino currently manages one of today’s leading publications on humanitarian aid, global health and international development, the weekly GDB. At Devex, she has helped grow a global newsroom, with talented journalists from major development hubs such as Washington, D.C, London and Brussels. She regularly writes about innovations in global development.