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EBRD Rated “Good” In 2020 Aid Transparency Index

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By Axel  Reiserer

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has, for the first time, been ranked “good” in the 2020 Aid Transparency Index published by Publish What You Fund – The Global Campaign for Aid Transparency following significant improvement of its policies and delivery.

Chief Executive Officer of the organisation, Gary Forster said: “We congratulate the EBRD on ranking in the ‘good’ category in the 2020 Aid Transparency Index, a significant improvement since the 2018 Index.

“As large quantities of aid are being reallocated to deal with the Covid-19 emergency, the transparency of international aid is more important than ever. So it is promising to see an increase in the quantity, quality and timeliness of aid data now being shared by a broad cross-section of the world’s major aid agencies.

“As we work together to fill the gaps in the aid data landscape, we look forward to exploring how we can best meet the demand for data and data engagement.”

The civil society organisation assessed 47 development and aid organisations against their fulfilment of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) Standard.

Overall, 11 donors are now in the “very good” category, an increase of four from 2018. The number in the “good” category increased by 2 to 15.

This means that over half of the 47 assessed donors are now ranked as “good” or “very good”.

The EBRD was rated “fair” in 2018 and has since taken important steps to increase the transparency of its funding and access to information through its website and publication to the IATI Standard.

Under its new Access to Information Policy, the Bank reinforced its commitment to “enhancing transparency and accountability, improving disclosure with affected stakeholders and fostering good governance in respect of all its operations and activities.”

The Bank has been publishing data on its investment operations and key documents to the IATI Standard since May 2015.

IATI is a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that aims to make information about aid and development spending transparent and accessible.

EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti said: “We are very pleased with this recognition of our effort to improve transparency of and access to our work.

“We are determined to continue along this path to make our activities ever more effective and impactful.

“The new report will offer us new insights which we will analyse carefully and take on board wherever applicable.”

While the report states overall improvements, it also urges further progress with the publication of performance data especially in the light of global challenges.

“If we’re going to achieve the [United Nations’] Sustainable Development Goals we need to know what difference we’re making, what’s working and what’s not, and with so few results and evaluations being published it’s just not clear that we know any of this,” the report says.

UK’s internet use surges to record levels

UK adults are now spending more than a quarter of their waking day online – the highest on record – with services such as TikTok and Zoom seeing unprecedented growth, according to Ofcom’s latest study into the nation’s online lives.

Ofcom’s annual Online Nation report – an in-depth study of how people use the internet – reveals that during the height of lockdown, UK adults spent a daily average of four hours and two minutes online – up from just under three and a half hours in September last year.

The study also reveals how coronavirus is changing the way we communicate. The proportion of UK online adults making video calls at least weekly has doubled during lockdown (from 35% to 71%). Zoom (659,000 adult internet users in January and 13 million in April) and Houseparty (175,000 versus 4 million) have rapidly grown their user bases.

Video-sharing sites and apps are also surging in popularity. TikTok, for example, reached 12.9 million UK adult visitors in April, up from just 5.4 million in January. One third (32%) of online adults now spend more time viewing video-sharing services than traditional TV, and two in five of us now create and upload videos ourselves.

The research also encompasses findings from our joint study with the Information Commissioner’s Office into Online Harms and our Adults’ Media Use and Attitudes report 2020.

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