Resources: Vertical Integration Research

Browse our resources covering Vertical Integration Research.


Citizens Demanding Vaccine Accountability: Highlights of G-Watch’s 2021 Ako, Ikaw, Tayo, May Pananagutan

On February 14 to 16, 2021, G-Watch’s annual event—Ako, Ikaw, Tayo, May Pananagutan (AIM-P)—took on an unlikely theme: ‘Love and Accountability at the Time of a Pandemic.’ The theme jumps off from the idea that the best way to love during a pandemic is to hold power to account.

Ten sites in the Philippines held simultaneous events, both physical and online, which were attended by representatives from local government, youth groups, and civil society organizations, as well as citizens - in Marawi; Bacolod; Dumaguete; San Miguel, Bohol; Sibagat, Agusan del Sur; Quezon City; Puerto Princesa; Cebu City; Maasin, Southern Leyte; and Tacloban. Majority of the events were held on Valentines’ Day.

This report presents the highlights of the simultaneous events, particularly the key themes that emerged from the assessment and reflection, which are as follows:

  • The interfacing of the national and local governments would be key to the success of the vaccination program.
  • The upcoming 2022 elections can be an accountability platform for the government’s performance in responding to the pandemic.
  • Despite the pandemic, citizens and citizen groups have adapted to continue demanding responsive governance and exacting accountability from the government.
  • The youth are leading the call for accountability in COVID-19 response.
  • The call for accountability in the vaccination program mobilizes multi-sectoral action.
 


TPA Now! A Moro G-Watcher

TPA Now! A Paper Series on Transparency, Participation and Accountability is a platform for practitioners, researchers and action strategists to present evidence and reflect on the practice and research on strategic TPA and to broaden awareness on the importance of accountability in governance. It is an initiative of Government Watch (G-Watch), in partnership with Accountability Research Center (ARC) to advance the discourse and practice of ‘strategic TPA.’

 


TPA Now! Exacting Accountability in Philippine COVID-19 Loans

The challenge of transformative impact of transparency, participation and accountability (TPA) initiatives points to the need for a different way of doing accountability. To advance the discourse and practice of ‘strategic TPA,’ Government Watch (G-Watch), in partnership with Accountability Research Center (ARC), launches TPA Now! A Paper Series on Transparency, Participation and Accountability as a platform for practitioners, researchers and action strategists to present evidence and reflect on the practice and research on strategic TPA and to broaden awareness on the importance of accountability in governance. 

This 3rd issue of TPA Now! looks into the loans and grants incurred by the Philippine government to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes a database of the relevant loans and grants with financing institutions, the highlights of the agreements, including their priority sectors and payment terms. The paper also includes a review of emerging international standards in promoting transparency, participation and accountability in COVID-19 loans, a rapid scanning of what accountability mechanisms and platforms are provided in Philippine COVID-19 loan and grant agreements, and the critical gaps in exacting accountability from the government's use of borrowed financing to respond to the pandemic.

 


TPA Now! Rebooting Accountability: An Introduction to the TPA Now! Paper Series

The challenge of transformative impact of transparency, participation and accountability (TPA) initiatives points to the need for a different way of doing accountability. To advance the discourse and practice of ‘strategic TPA,’ Government Watch (G-Watch), in partnership with Accountability Research Center (ARC), launches TPA Now! A Paper Series on Transparency, Participation and Accountability as a platform for practitioners, researchers and action strategists to present evidence and reflect on the practice and research on strategic TPA and to broaden awareness on the importance of accountability in governance. 

This first issue of TPA Now! Paper Series provides the context and rationale for the paper series. The worsening accountability situation, both in the country and in various parts of the world, despite decades-long efforts by civil society, governments and development partners shows how difficult is the fight against corruption, abuse of power and impunity. As pro-reform/ pro-accountability forces advance and learn from their actions, so do anti-reform/ anti-accountability forces—and often at a faster rate given the resources they have. For this reason, the campaign for accountability not only has to continue, but it also has to be done better and differently. Continuing the critical reflection, discourse and exchanges of knowledge among allies would be crucial to ensure progress. Sharing good experiences and lessons would also be useful in providing the needed inspiration to keep the work going even against formidable odds. 

 


TPA Now! Building Transparency, Participation, and Accountability in BARMM Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic

The challenge of transformative impact of transparency, participation and accountability (TPA) initiatives points to the need for a different way of doing accountability. To advance the discourse and practice of ‘strategic TPA,’ Government Watch (G-Watch), in partnership with Accountability Research Center (ARC), launches TPA Now! A Paper Series on Transparency, Participation and Accountability as a platform for practitioners, researchers and action strategists to present evidence and re ect on the practice and research on strategic TPA and to broaden awareness on the importance of accountability in governance. 

This paper, the second issue of TPA Now! Paper Series, explores the emerging practices of transparency, participation and accountability in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), Specifically, it checks how BARMM demonstrates its emerging TPA practices as it responds to the COVID-19 crisis. A quick scan of the efforts of BARRM in addressing COVID-19 shows that BARMM is heading to the right direction in enabling TPA in BARMM. However, there are still many complementary policies, mechanisms and efforts needed to set up a holistic, integrated accountability system in BARMM that works towards sustainable development and lasting peace. 

 


G-Watch Independent Validation of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) Report on Field Survey Findings

Given the many issues and challenges surrounding the government’s Social Amelioration Program (SAP), including the observed ‘reversed accountability’ (Aceron 2020) in its existing validation process, Government Watch (G-Watch) has undertaken its own independent validation of the delivery of SAP assistance at the beneficiary level. G-Watch’s independent validation of the SAP was done through field interview of 470 SAP and non-SAP beneficiaries in 12 barangays in 4 localities all over the country using a survey tool.

 


Reversing Accountability: Learning from Accountability Frontliners’ Observation of the DSWD Social Amelioration Program Validation

This paper learns from G-Watch accountability frontliners that conducted the observation of the SAP validation by looking into and analyzing their reports and notes, and by undertaking informal online reflection-assessment sessions with them. The quick undertaking of G-Watch accountability frontliners to observe DSWD’s SAP in the midst of a pandemic shows that (a) citizens can continue to check government processes even in a crisis situation as “accountability frontliners,” though safety measures need to be set up and prior engagement with concerned government offices is deemed most facilitative, (b) citizen oversight of a supposed accountability mechanism in a government program is critical especially during a pandemic not only to check whether the mechanism is operating efficiently and effectively, but also to reveal possible distortion on the ground of the accountability intent of the mechanism, and (c) transparency, participation and accountability mechanisms in government could totally serve purposes that do not advance citizen empowerment, but instead check or control citizens, reversing accountability relationship between government and citizens critical in democracy.

 


Result and Analysis of G-Watch’s Online Survey on the State of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) Implementation

Government Watch (G-Watch) is currently conducting a monitoring of citizen entitlements under the COVID-19 response. This endeavor asserts the need for governments to pay attention to providing what citizens are entitled to during emergency/ crisis situation. Often, this is overlooked and a cause of abuse where delivery of services and assistance becomes an opportunity for corruption and abuse of authority, instead of a way to ensure welfare and protection of the people.

 


Strengthening the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) as an Accountability Mechanism in Local Governance (#SKasGWatch Project)

This report shares the highlights of the pilot implementation of the Strengthening the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) as an Accountability Mechanism in Local Governance or the #SKasGWatch Project and the documentation of its final activity, the learning exchange in January 2020, that brought together the project team and lead volunteer-monitors in the three pilot sites for an assessment and reflection. Implemented from November 2018 to January 2020, #SKasGWatch is an initiative of Government Watch (G-Watch) in collaboration of Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI) and Accountability Research Center (ARC) that aims to enable the SKs in engaging key poverty reduction programs of the government to advance the accountability and responsiveness of poverty reduction programs.

 


Pitfalls of Aiming to Empower the Bottom from the Top: The Case of Philippine Participatory Budgeting

This paper explains why and how a reform program that opened up spaces for participatory budgeting was ultimately unable to result in pro-citizen power shifts that transformed governance. The study reviews the design and implementation of Bottom-Up Budgeting (BuB), the nationwide participatory budgeting (PB) program in the Philippines, which ran from 2012 to 2016 under the Benigno Aquino government. The findings underscore the importance of institutional design to participatory governance reforms. BuB’s goal was to transform local government by providing more space for civil society organizations (CSOs) to co-identify projects with the government and to take part in the budgeting process, but it did not strengthen CSO or grassroots capacity to hold their Local Government Units (LGUs) accountable.

 

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