UNDP global leader in transparencyOct 8, 2014
New York —The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the most transparent aid organization, according to a leading global ranking released today.
The 2014 Aid Transparency Index recognized UNDP for its “commendable performance” in publishing information beyond international standards this year, placing it first overall out of 68 major agencies evaluated worldwide.
“UNDP should be congratulated for making significant improvements to the quality of its publication,” said Publish What You Fund, a non-profit organization that advocates and measures transparency.
The index is based on the International Aid Transparency Initiative standard, which sets a common global benchmark for more timely, accurate and comprehensive aid information. Financial flows, budgets, results, and project location, timelines, and documents are published into an online database that tracks how aid is spent. This not only increases the accountability of donor countries, but also allows developing countries to better align donor assistance with their national priorities and budgets, ultimately maximizing aid effectiveness.
More than 280 countries, UN agencies, multilateral banks and NGOs use the IATI standard, and more than 20 recipient countries have endorsed the initiative.
As an original IATI signatory, UNDP began publishing to global standards in 2011. Since then, it has consistently met and even surpassed international transparency standards, operating an innovative portal (open.undp.org) that details more than 10,000 of its development projects across 177 countries and territories, and publishes over US$5.8 billion in project data.
“Transparency is core to our mission,” said Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator. “We are gratified to be recognized for our efforts to operate in an open, transparent manner. UNDP is committed to working in the open to spark innovation, to ensure the best possible use of funds entrusted to it and to accelerate the development of a sustainable future for all.”
This continued commitment to transparency was recognized in the appointment of UNDP to head the IATI Secretariat last year. Leading a consortium of the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), the governments of Ghana and Sweden, and UK-based NGO Development Initiatives, UNDP is using its considerable reach across 177 countries and territories to continue to improve the transparency of international development cooperation.
“This role puts UNDP at the forefront of global efforts to increase transparency in development cooperation, including through efforts to develop further the IATI common standard for publishing information about aid spending,” Helen Clark said.
UNDP also discloses its internal audit reports, and last year moved from annual budget reporting to publishing monthly reports, which detail activities and result frameworks using sub-national geographical data.