CoST Honduras and CoST Malawi – A win for transparency and citizen engagement at the OGP Summit

CoST Honduras and CoST Malawi were both winners at the Open Government Awards. Celebrating civil society initiatives that use government data to bring concrete benefits, CoST Honduras was awarded third prize and CoST Malawi received an Honourable Mention at the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Summit 2016 in Paris, France. Under the theme of ‘Making Transparency Count’, the Open Government Awards shine a spotlight on reformers. Both CoST countries were recognised by the Awards for their contributions to improving civic participation in public life, improving the functioning of government and creating new services.

Sanjay Pradhan, Chief Executive Officer of OGP, said: “Transparency is not just making data open – it’s using that data to bring citizens into the policy-making process and closing the feedback loop between citizen complaints and government responses. These award-winning initiatives from across the globe show that change happens from the ground up, and is most successful when civil society partners with government to collaborate for a better future.”

Christiaan Poortman, Chairperson of CoST Board, said: “We are extremely proud of CoST Honduras’ achievement of third place in the Open Government Awards 2016. Honduras’ efforts in incorporating CoST into the fabric of government are truly deserving of the recognition that this award brings them, as a strong advocate for greater transparency and accountability. CoST Malawi’s honourable mention in the awards is yet another success that puts CoST firmly in the spotlight as an effective global initiative. These are great accomplishments that we will continue to build on, increasing transparency in public infrastructure and helping to change lives across the world.”

CoST International congratulates both CoST Honduras and CoST Malawi for their award-winning efforts in strengthening infrastructure transparency through citizen engagement. From CoST Honduras’ citizen training on the use of SISOCS for demanding accountability to CoST Malawi’s innovative SMS platform as a lifeline for citizens on reporting infrastructure issues, both programmes make transparency count to change lives through better value infrastructure. Nonetheless, the Award is an encouragement rather than a conclusion for both countries. From piloting an Infrastructure Transparency Index in Latin America to creating an online disclosure platform in Africa, CoST Honduras and CoST Malawi will continue to make transparency count.

Find out more about the Open Government Awards and check out CoST Honduras’ blog via the OGP’s website.