Over the past decade, governance assessments have become increasingly important tools in Africa for monitoring whether governments are failing or succeeding in their commitments in legislation, government policies and international law. A workshop gathering civil society, development practitioners and research institutes will focus on civil society’s involvement in governance assessments and explore how these tools can better influence governance and policy processes, and hold governments accountable.
Dakar, November 8th, 2011 – A three-day workshop in Dakar, Senegal, seeks to demonstrate, with specific tools and country experiences, how a more effective involvement by civil society in governance assessments, both as “producers” and “users” of governance data, can promote democratic governance through increased accountability and more inclusive participation.
The Africa Forum on Civil Society and Governance Assessments will be held from November 10-12, 2011around three broad:
1. African governance assessments in which civil society is involved in partnership with government;
2. Self-assessments of the civil society sector in Africa; and
3. Governance assessments initiated independently of governments, with a focus on initiatives that make use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) for large-scale citizen engagement
In addition, four sub-regional mapping reports will be presented for Western, Central, Eastern and Southern Africa, to learn about civil society’s involvement in these three initiatives and to help ground discussions during the conference in a local context.
The workshop grew out of a realization that in order to have greater impact, civil society must improve its interaction with, and effect on, public institutions, actors and policies – and do so based on rigorous evidence. Governance assessments help diagnose governance deficits and identify critical opportunities. While assessment tools have grown in acceptance and usage, there still needs to be a better understanding of how to translate the information produced by these tools into on-the-ground practices. The workshop hopes to assimilate this broad range of tools and to offer an opportunity to share experiences, best practices and to develop networks and strategic partnerships between civil society and research institutions to ensure that their policy engagement is more influential and sustained.
The workshop will bring together an estimated 120 participants – civil society, research institutes and development practitioners from more than 30 countries, and representatives of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It is being organized by the UNDP Partnerships Bureau/Civil Society Division, the Bureau for Development Policy/Oslo Governance Centre and the Regional Bureau of Africa, with support from the UNDP-France Trust Fund together with four leading partners in the field of civil society and governance: TrustAfrica, CIVICUS, CONGAD and the African Governance Institute.
The workshop will be held at Radisson Blu Hotel in Dakar, with an opening ceremony on Thursday, November 10, 2011 at 9 a.m. The media is invited.
For more information, please visit the conference website