Tuesday, October 9, 2012

German aid transparency - 2012 edition

Last year I called the attention about the unsurprisingly low ranking of German organizations in charge of foreign assistance programs in the ranking of the Aid Transparency Index developed by Publish What You Fund (PWYF). Well, this year the output looks ugly again, but there are sharp differences between organizations.

In last years's edition, KfW was 21st among 58 donors, with 38% score.... not too bad. But in the new release (with improved measures for the score, which make comparison across years a little tricky) KfW ranks 50th over 72 donors, with 26% score!
KfW performed poorly, ranking 50th overall and 6th of seven development finance institutions. KfW also performed significantly worse than GIZ, due to the fact that no activity level information is published systematically; nor is there a public database where such information can be accessed. KfW performs relatively well on the organisation and country level, and is the highest ranking donor that scores 0% at the activity level. KfW does publish project level information for a small number of projects.
Better news for GIZ. Still in the 39th place, but now with more organizations in the ranking, improved from 25% score to 40%:
GIZ performed moderately, ranking 39th and scoring just over the overall average score. It scores below average at both the country and activity levels, though it performs well at the organisation level, where it ranks 19th overall. GIZ’s increased score is almost entirely due to its performance on newly added indicators; it performed very consistently with the 2011 score when controlling for methodological changes, suggesting limited new activity. Most information can be found in a database that publishes basic information for all projects in both English and German, but no financial data is provided — not even the overall financial cost for individual activities. It is also difficult to find and interpret aggregate data.
The lack of transparency is married to the problem of almost nonexistence rigorous impact evaluation of the projects carried out by these institutions, where millions in tax payers money (me included!) are spent without the possibility of surveillance from civil society.

A big challenge ahead for KfW, GIZ, the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the brand new German Institute for Development Evaluation (that needs to work in its web page before anything).


German aid transparency 

1 comment:

  1. Dear Dany, I just want to draw your attention to the transparency portal of KfW - online since May 2013. http://transparenz.kfw-entwicklungsbank.de/en/
    This wont solve all the issues but is a good start and shall be further improved in the next month.