The OGF took place on 3-5 October 2011, and was organised by the UNDP’s Democratic Governance Group in collaboration with United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF), ActionAid, ACT Alliance, World Bank Institute and PRIA Global Partnership. The Forum focused on participatory governance assessments and social accountability as means for strengthening democratic governance at the national and international level.
This paper includes various actual examples of stakeholder groups that engage each other constructively to achieve long lasting results within the framework of social accountability. The author finds that monitoring objectives and indicators should be developed in a participatory manner to ensure they resonate with the community needs, priorities and aspirations. Ideally, projects should be aligned with national planning processes and focus on national goals, such as the MDGs. However, one must admit that these national programs and priorities may sometimes directly conflict with participatory processes. Finally, community monitoring and assessment of governments need to have a clear plan for using and disclosing data gathered that serve as evidence. The decision is not simply to feed these to media and the courts to move towards formal process to hold government to account. The underlying social contracts of the roles of different groups and stakeholders need to be considered