IFTI Watch

  • 3 December 2012

    UNDP Announces Portal on Development Efforts

    The United Nations  Development Programme Nov. 30 launched “a new online portal allowing users access to data on its work in 177 countries and territories, in an effort to fulfill its transparency commitments.” Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, said open access will allow the public to monitor UNDP investments in poverty and sustainable human development for […]

  • 2 November 2012

    Results Mixed as EITI Board Discusses Future

    By Erica Westenberg  Westenberg is EITI Policy Officer at Revenue Watch Institute where this article first appeared as a blog post. The International Board of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) made uneven progress in its discussions on how to strengthen the EITI, while meeting in Lusaka, Zambia, on 25-26 October. The Board, which includes […]

  • 26 October 2012

    IFIs Rate Low on Access by Publish What Your Fund

    International financial institutions fared poorly in the “freedom of information” category of the recently issued ratings by Publish What Your Fund. Although the development banks ranked high overall on the 43 factors used, their scores in the access to information category merited red dots. The red dots signified “poor legislation” in the category, just one […]

  • 1 October 2012

    Publish What You Fund Reports Improved Picture

    Publish What You Fund on Oct. 1 reported that “donor transparency is on the rise but continues to fall short of best practice.” In a report ranking 72 donor organizations on their levels of aid transparency, the organization said, “This is particularly disappointing at a time when transparency is critical to ensuring confidence in aid […]

  • 27 September 2012

    ADB Names Three Members of New Appeals Panel

    The Asian Development Bank Sept. 27 appointed the three members of its new Independent Appeals Panel to review appeals under its revised Public Communications Policy. The panel members, who will serve for three years, are: Surasee Kosolnavin is a former executive director of Thailand’s Official Information Commission. An attorney, he was a commissioner of the […]

  • 18 September 2012

    World Bank to Publish AI Decisions Upon Issuance

    The World Bank has decided to publish online all the decisions by the internal body that rules on access to information appeals, eliminating a delay caused by the current system. The decisions by the Access to Information Committee have been published in quarterly and annual reports, but now will be posted on the AI website […]

  • 15 August 2012

    ITU Issues Key Draft Negotiating Document

    The International Telecommunication Union has released a draft policy concerning possible changes to international telecommunication regulations in advance of the December’s World Conference on International Telecommunications. The ITU Council on July 13 announced its intention to publish some of the material being sought by its critics. (See previous FreedomInfo.org report.)  The ITU has invited public comments […]

  • 3 August 2012

    World Bank Conducting Survey on Access Policy

    The World Bank Aug. 2 announced a survey “on the public’s experience with accessing information from the institution.” This will be the second such survey since the Bank implementing its Access to Information Policy in 2010. “We hope to receive your views so that we may use them to further improve our ability to serve […]

  • 30 July 2012

    Bill Clinton Urges More Transparency on AIDS Funds

    More openness is required about funding to fight AIDS, former U.S. President Bill Clinton said July 27 at an international conference in Washington. “We can target the money we are spending more effectively,” Clinton said, according to news reports. “This may be somewhat controversial but I feel strongly about it. We need a new level […]

  • 30 July 2012

    Journalist, IMF Spar Over Confidential Document

    The Vienna-based South East Europe Media Organization (SEEMO), an affiliate of the international Press Institute (IPI), on July 17 expressed concern that the top International Monetary Fund representative in Greece has said he would deny future information to a reporter who wrote about a confidential IMF report. An IMF spokesman in Washington acknowledged to FreedomInfo.org […]

  • 20 July 2012

    Access Sought to World Bank Reports on Bangladesh

    Efforts are being made to obtain public access to two reports sent by the World Bank to the Bangladesh government about possible corruption surrounding a major bridge project. Release of the reports is at the discretion of the government, which so far as declined to disclose them. Another World Bank report on the same project, […]

  • 29 June 2012

    Agreement on Publishing Aid Data Reached by OECD Group

    A common, open standard for publishing development aid information has been agreed by the OECD Working Party on Aid Effectiveness which met June 28-29 in Paris, according to a press release from Publish What You Fund. United Kingdom Development Secretary of State Andrew Mitchell will co-chair the new Global Partnership, is quoted as saying, “The […]

  • 25 June 2012

    ADB Names Three to Independent Appeals Panel

    The Asian Development Bank June 25 announced the appointment of three “transparency experts” who will serve as members of a new Independent Appeals Panel. The panel members are: Surasee Kosolnavin is a former executive director of Thailand’s Official Information Commission. An attorney, he was a commissioner of the National Human Rights Commission of Thailand and […]

  • 19 June 2012

    IAMs See Transparency Gaps at IFIs, New Report Says

    “Inadequate project-level consultation and information disclosure” is one of the most common problems identified by the independent fact-finding bodies connected with international financial institutions, according to a new report, “Giving Affected People a Greater Voice – 20 Years On.’ The report examines the experiences of 10 Independent Accountability Mechanisms at IFIs. IAMs began to get established […]

  • 8 June 2012

    World Bank Reverses Decision; Releases Draft Egyptian FOI Law

    The World Bank’s Access to Information Committee has reversed an earlier decision and granted FreedomInfo.org access to draft freedom of information legislation for Egypt, prepared by a Bank consultant. The Bank had denied access to the document on March 20, asserting that it was covered by the “deliberative information” exception under the Bank’s Access to […]

  • 7 June 2012

    World Bank Releases Sanctions Decisions

    The World Bank has begun releasing the full decisions of its Sanction Board, which considers whether  to bar companies from Bank-funded work. Late last year the Bank started posting summaries of the Board’s decisions, and it took the next step on May 30 when it announced the release of seven decisions in eight cases.   […]

  • 18 May 2012

    Lack of Transparency for WCIT Talks Draws Protests

    Objections are being raised to the lack of transparency surrounding the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT). A coalition of 30 interest groups May 18 wrote that “[t]he current preparatory process lacks the transparency, openness of process, and inclusiveness of all relevant stakeholders….” (See announcement on Article 19 website.) The comments came as the World […]

  • 3 May 2012

    AfDB Directors Approve New Disclosure Policy

    The African Development Bank Board of Directors on May 2 approved a new policy on disclosure and access to information. The policy, available in English and French, will be made effective in nine months. The policy does not appear to be changed from a March draft on which the AfDB requested comments. (See previous FreedomInfo.org […]

  • 27 April 2012

    Civil Society G20 Engagement: Reflections on Mexico’s Experience

    By Rocio Stevens Stevens is the Oxfam Mexico Campaigns Coordinator.  This article and a companion piece on the Argentinian experience appeared in the monthly newsletter on the G20 by the Heinrich Boell Foundation.  The 2012 Mexican G20 Summit comes at a time of deep global imbalances, instability and increasing inequality. Donor countries have reduced their aid allocations […]

  • 27 April 2012

    Galvanizing Civil Society’s Fight in Argentina on G20

     By Maria Jose Romero Romero is with LATINDADD, Peru. This article and a companion piece on the Mexican experience first appeared in the monthly newsletter on the G20 by the Heinrich Boell Foundation. Over time, civil society organizations (CSOs) in Argentina have monitored the role of their national government in global processes, such as the […]


In this column, Washington, D.C.-based journalist Toby J. McIntosh reports on the latest developments in information disclosure in International Financial and Trade Institutions (IFTI).
Contact: freeinfo@gwu.edu or
1-(703) 276-7748