The 2017 Forum, the fourth edition, aligns with Sustainable Development Goal 16 and focuses attention on the role of citizen action in building effective, accountable and inclusive societies. In addition, it seeks to better understand the nature of emerging governance challenges, as well as opportunities, and to develop responses and solutions collaboratively drawing on emerging lessons. In doing that, this GPSA Global Partners Forum attempts to address three key questions:
How does the changing governance landscape directly affect the field of social accountability for development and, more importantly, what responses have emerged to address these challenges?
In what manner and to what extent have state institutions embraced and incorporated citizen feedback and social accountability mechanisms, and what does this experience teach us?
What’s new in the field of social accountability? What roles are emerging innovative approaches, organizations, and funding mechanisms playing in the field, and to what extent are they delivering on their promise and aspirations? To what extent are innovative approaches taking root, vis-à-vis traditional models?
These questions are particularly relevant for organizations such as the GPSA itself and its Global Partners, including the Open Government Partnership and Making All Voices Count, co-conveners of this Forum, as the environment in which social accountability approaches are being implemented today is palpably different from that which inspired the creation of these initiatives. The field of social accountability for development must lead and rise to the challenges of mitigating fragility, conflict and violence, building trust in institutions, and strengthening civic space, among others, purposefully embracing innovative approaches as it seeks to demonstrate its effectiveness. The questions echo the GPSA’s own trajectory as it formulates its GPSA 2020 Vision and Strategy, aligning with the World Bank’s Global Governance Practice, introducing a more purposeful focus to its knowledge and grant-making interventions, embracing the challenge of fragility, incorporating gender perspectives and building beyond its emphasis on service provision.
As a dynamic and diverse group of stakeholders convenes at the GPSA Global Partners Forum, the event’s main objectives are to explore a new shared vision for the field of social accountability, to connect and equip participants to develop and implement elements of this vision into fruition.
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