Open contracting refers to norms and practices for increased disclosure and participation in public contracting including tendering, performance and completion. It includes the variety of contract types, from more basic contracts for the procurement of goods, to complex contracts, joint venture agreements, licenses and production sharing agreements. Open contracting encompasses all public contracting, including contracts funded by combinations of public, private and donor sources.
Governments across the world spend over nine and half trillion dollars a year on goods and services. Too much of that money is misspent, squandered or stolen. Our mission is to end secret deals and to ensure that those resources are spent openly, effectively and efficiently.
Before joining the Open Contracting Partnership, Gavin was Executive Director and Director of Campaigns of Global Witness. He oversaw the groundbreaking and award-winning investigative, campaigning and advocacy work uncovering secret deals, corruption and conflict around the world at Global Witness. He helped create the international Publish What You Pay campaign and helped negotiate the intergovernmental Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative that brings together oil and mining companies, home- and host-governments and civil society to improve disclosure and oversight of over $1 trillion dollars of oil and mining money.
He is an expert on illicit financial flows, and helped lead global efforts to end the abuse of anonymous shell companies for money laundering and financial crime, including working with the British government's recent presidency of the G8 and the Open Government Partnership.
He has a Doctorate from the University of Reading and has worked with Chatham House in London and the United National Environmental Programme in the past on analysing and investigating global environmental crime.
“Open Contracting creates the space for collaboration between governments, companies and civil society to end secret deals in public contracting and to make sure that trillions of dollars spent on goods and services result in better development outcomes for all
Kathrin joins the OCP with a passion for supporting partners with expertise, tools, processes and connections to open up contracting in their countries and sectors. In her role as Program Director she will develop the program portfolio of the OCP and help craft a strategy that deliver values for the OCP clients and partners. Previously to joining the OCP, Kathrin was a governance specialist at the World Bank Group where for the past decade she led open contracting and governance projects and programs in Africa and Asia. Together with the Open Contracting team at the World Bank, she incubated the OCP and helped build its global brand and reach. Kathrin has a Masters in Advanced International Relations from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University and a BA in Economics from the University of Vienna.
Chair of the Advisory Board and Director of Public Integrity and Openness in the Governance Global Practice, The World Bank Group
As someone who has worked on procurement and public contracting his whole life, it has been heartening for me to see such strong interest and growing engagement around open contracting. It is an honor to chair the new Advisory Board of Directors, a group of talented and experienced individuals, which will ensure the Partnership continues to advance this crucial agenda
Robert Hunja is the Director for Public Integrity and Openness in the World Bank’s Governance Global Practice. In that role he oversees the implementation of the World Bank’s procurement policies as well as several programs focused on enhancing transparency, citizen participation, and multistakeholder collaboration in countries around the world. He previously served as manager for the Open Government practice in the World Bank Institute where he led programs on Digital Engagement, Open Contracting, Open Budgets and the Open Private Sector Platform. Mr. Hunja, a Kenyan national and lawyer by training, has been doing significant work in the field openness and has worked in the procurement arena for over 17 years. In 2006, he joined the Government of Kenya where he helped establish the Public Procurement Oversight Authority and was its first Director General.
Vice-Chair of the Advisory Board and Director of Democratic Participation and Governance, Ford Foundation
For governments and companies that have nothing to hide, nothing to be ashamed of, open contracting is their friend. It can build greater understanding, confidence and trust, and help make sure everyone benefits from public transactions.
Rakesh Rajani is Director, Democratic Participation and Governance at the Ford Foundation in New York. Until December 2014 he was the Head of Twaweza, an East African organization that promotes citizen agency, open government and basic education. He is also a founding member and past co-chair of the Open Government Partnership, which involves 65 countries covering two billion people. From 2001 to 2007 Rakesh served as the founding Executive Director of HakiElimu, Tanzania’s leading citizen engagement and education advocacy organization. Rakesh serves on several national and international boards, and was a fellow of Harvard University from 1998 to 2013. He has written and edited over 400 papers and popular publications in English and Swahili. Rakesh graduated summa cum laude from Brandeis and Harvard Universities.
Board Member of the Natural Resources Governance Institute, the Natural Resource Charter, Management Sciences for Health and former Vice President for External Affairs at Royal Dutch Shell
Opaque contracting leads to waste, inefficiency and corruption – none of which helps deliver goods, services and infrastructure to people in need. That’s why open contracting is so vital. Its focus on disclosure and participation helps ensure improved development outcomes for governments, citizens and companies.
Alan Detheridge retired from his position as Vice President for External Affairs at Royal Dutch Shell in April, 2007. Since then he has concentrated on assisting non-governmental organizations focused on good governance, health, development and cross-sector partnerships. He is a board member of the Natural Resource Governance Institute, the Natural Resource Charter and Management Sciences for Health. His previous board memberships include the Synergos Institute, Africare and the International Foundation for Education and Self-Help.
Senior Program Officer for International Advocacy at the International Budget Partnership
The Open Contracting Partnership strengthens the social contract and performance by advancing disclosure and participation in public contracting. It brings diverse reformers together to build norms, systems and standards and stimulate collective action to deliver the public goods and services people deserve. I'm proud to be part of this movement.
Claire Schouten is Senior Program Officer, International Advocacy at the International Budget Partnership. She previously facilitated a network of civil society organisations engaged in community-driven accountability and development in fragile and conflict-affected countries. Claire has served as an advisor to several transparency and accountability initiatives, including the Open Contracting Partnership, the Open Government Partnership and the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative. Claire specialises in integrity, transparency, and accountability in public resource management, from aid and extractives to infrastructure and service delivery. She works with civil society, governments, business and development partners on action learning and capacity development, monitoring and evaluation and policy guidance. She has more than ten years of field experience, including in Africa, the Caribbean, Central and Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Claire has published on technology for open contracting in fragile and conflict-affected states; social accountability in situations of conflict and fragility; and drivers of change in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Technical Director at the UK Open Data Institute
Publishing open contracting data does not just help increase transparency and accountability, but also provides a vital source of information that can be incorporated into decision making by governments and businesses. Its power will be unleashed through links to company details, to government budgets, and to performance data.
Jeni Tennison is the Technical Director of the UK Open Data Institute. She worked as an independent consultant, specialising in open data publishing and consumption and including work on legislation.gov.uk and linked data work for data.gov.uk, before joining the ODI in 2012. She is a member of the UK Government’s Open Data User Group and Open Standards Board, as well as the W3C’s Technical Architecture Group and chairs the W3C CSV on the Web Working Group. Jeni was awarded an OBE for services to technology and open data in the 2014 New Year Honours.
Adjunct Professor of Anthropology at the University of Queensland, he is also Principal of a boutique global consultancy Yirri LLC, focused on social performance counsel and strategic communication.
Working in many parts of the developing world for decades, I have always found it amazing that more corporates do not realize the value of openness and transparency with respect to contracts with governments, and indeed with communities. These open agreements provide, among other things, a concrete and explicit road map and a demonstration to the public at large of who is committed to what and at what cost and who benefits. For the companies it can also be an important ‘insurance policy’ when governments and other leadership changes. Increasingly for many companies it is simply a normal way of doing business now.
Dr. Chris Anderson, an anthropologist, is Principal of a boutique global consultancy Yirri LLC, focused on social performance counsel and strategic communication, particularly in the extractive sector. Prior to this, he was Rio Tinto’s strategy leader and corporate functional lead for Communities in the Americas, with a particular focus on Indigenous communities. Previously, Anderson was Senior Director Corporate and External Affairs Africa and Group Executive Social Responsibility for Newmont Mining Corporation. He was also Executive General Manager, Community Relations for Normandy Mining, then Australia’s largest gold producer and prior to that, Chief Executive of the South Australian Museum. He is currently a member of the Valuation Advisory Committee for First Peoples Worldwide. He is a past chair of the International Council on Mining & Metals Human Rights and Indigenous Peoples working group. Dr. Anderson is also Adjunct Professor Anthropology, University of Queensland and a Member of the American Anthropological Association and the Australian Institute of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Studies.
Undersecretary for Institutional Development of the Department of Social Welfare and Development of the Government of the Philippines
Making democracy work requires a predisposition - a preferential option for the participants, not simply as observers but as engaged and informed citizens actively seeking ways to be part of the contestation and collaboration in decision making and choice making processes.
Angelita Gregorio-Medel is currently the Undersecretary for Institutional Development of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) of the Philippine Government. Before joining government service, she was the Executive Director of the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability for East Asia and the Pacific (ANSA-EAP), a multi country program instituting social accountability practices, programs and mechanisms in the region. She is presently a member of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Steering Committee of the Phil. Government. The Grassroots Partnership Budgeting (GPB) which recently received the Gold Award during the inaugural Open Government Partnership (OGP) Awards in September 2014 takes its roots in the core community driven development program of the.
She has a wide experience in participatory initiatives in various development interventions from the grassroots to regional and international programs. Steeped in institutional reform and organization development work particularly in the area of human resource and performance management, capability building, and standards development including the formulation, implementation and assessment of reform initiatives, she continues to study the required calibration to achieve the needed balance in running a bureaucracy while pursuing out-of-the-box interventions aimed at strategic change to contribute to poverty reduction and improving welfare of families and communities. She has built her competency in social accountability design, development and implementation in several countries aside from the Philippines (Cambodia, Indonesia, and Mongolia as well as in inter-country networking for social accountability advocacy). Her professional experiences also include: Country Program Development and Technical Assistance in the area of people’s organization and community development, network and coalition building, leadership and organization change as well as policy advocacy. She is often tapped to undertake monitoring and evaluation interventions in tracking outcomes and results projects, programs and other development initiatives of community organizing and development work among the urban poor, fisher folk, farmers, and rural communities. She holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of Bielefeld, Germany. She lectures at the Ateneo de Manila University and serves as core faculty in the Leadership Programme for the Ateneo School of Government.
Mohammed Amin Adam
Executive Director of the Africa Centre for Energy Policy
My appointment to the Advisory Board of the Open Contracting Initiative is a call to the global duty of helping to deepen open contracting standards in Africa where millions of citizens of resource-rich countries continue to struggle for survival whilst their resource wealth is being mismanaged by vampire leaders and their collaborating companies. It is quite deceptive that resource rich countries in Africa are increasingly adopting open contracting standards in resource laws, yet contracting processes remain largely abused. This appointment further legitimizes my role as an open contracting campaigner for the effective implementation of open contracting standards on our continent.
Dr. Mohammed Amin Adam is the Executive Director of the Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP). Before joining ACEP, Dr. Adam was the Africa Coordinator of the extractives industries programme in Ibis, a Danish International NGO. He has also worked as the Oil Coordinator of Publish What You Pay Ghana. His experience in the public sector covered his work as an Energy Policy Analyst at the Ministry of Energy in Ghana, Commissioner of Ghana’s Public Utilities Regulatory Commission; and as a former Deputy Minister and Mayor of Ghana’s third city of Tamale.
He has consulted for national, African and international organizations and has spoken at some of the great universities as visiting speaker including - Stanford, Berkeley, Harvard and the Houston Law Centre. He has also presented papers at Chattam House, the World Bank Institute, the Brookings Institution and the Woodrow Wilson Centre. As Specialist on Africa’s energy policy, petroleum policy and governance, he is currently working in a number of countries including Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone and Kenya; advising governments and supporting parliamentary committees and CSOs. Dr. Adam recently testified on how Africa can avoid the resource curse before the United States Congress House Sub-committee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations.
Dr. Adam currently serves on the International Advisory Board of the Natural Resources and Community Review. In Ghana, he was recently a member of the Technical Committee set up by the Government of Ghana to review the Ghana Petroleum Revenue Management Act. He also offers advisory roles to a number of private sector operators in Ghana - as Founder and Chairman of Frontier Energy Africa Limited; Member of the Board of Ghana’s first private oil and gas mutual fund – the Weston Oil and Gas Fund; and Member of Zoil Oil Waste Services which is providing offshore sanitation services in Ghana oil industry.
Dr. Adam holds a PhD from CEPMLP of the University of Dundee in the UK specializing in petroleum fiscal systems, fiscal policy in resource-led economies; and institutional development. He also holds an MPhil (Economics) and B.A. (Hons) Economics from the University of Cape Coast.
Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution
After a decade of substantial progress in transparency and disclosure by governments and by international development institutions, a key element where progress is lagging is the disclosure of public sector contracts. The Open Contracting Partnership offers an opportunity to focus, debate and promote appropriate action to address this critical gap.
Jeff Gutman is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. In the Global Economy and Development Group, Jeff’s research efforts are directed at governance issues in developing countries including policy reform in public procurement. With his infrastructure background, he is also engaged in efforts on infrastructure finance, particularly relating to urban transport accessibility. Prior to Brookings, Jeff was at the World Bank for over 30 years in various leadership positions relating to urban and infrastructure policy and development. His last position at the Bank was Vice President for Operational Policy and Country Services. He has a Bachelor’s degree from Cornell in Industrial and Labor Relations and a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Rutgers University.
Beth Simone Noveck
Director of The Governance Lab and of the MacArthur Research Network on Opening Governance
Open contracting is a means to shed light on how governments have spent taxpayer dollars in the past but also to create the new tools and processes to make contracting more agile and accountable going forward. Above all, my hope is that by modeling, studying, and disseminating open contracting innovations and spurring a global conversation about such innovations in governance, the Open Contracting Partnership can be a global force for the development of more effective solutions to social challenges.
Beth Simone Noveck directs The Governance Lab and its MacArthur Research Network on Opening Governance. Funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Google.org, the GovLab strives to improve people’s lives by changing how we govern. The GovLab designs and tests technology, policy and strategies for fostering more open and collaborative approaches to strengthen the ability of people and institutions to work together to solve problems, make decisions, resolve conflict and govern themselves more effectively and legitimately.
The Jerry Hultin Global Network Visiting Professor at New York University’s Polytechnic School of Engineering, she was formerly the Jacob K. Javits Visiting Professor at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and a visiting professor at the MIT Media Lab. Beth is a professor of law at New York Law School. She served in the White House as the first United States Deputy Chief Technology Officer and director of the White House Open Government Initiative (2009-2011). UK Prime Minister David Cameron appointed her senior advisor for Open Government, and she served on the Obama-Biden transition team. Among projects she’s designed or collaborated on are Unchat, The Do Tank, Peer To Patent, Data.gov, Challenge.gov and the Gov Lab’s Living Labs and training platform, The Academy.
A graduate of Harvard University and Yale Law School, she serves on the Global Commission on Internet Governance and chairs the ICANN Strategy Panel on Multi-Stakeholder Innovation. She was named one of the “Foreign Policy 100″ by Foreign Policy, one of the “100 Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company and one of the “Top Women in Technology” by Huffington Post. She has also been honored by both the National Democratic Institute and Public Knowledge for her work in civic technology.
Beth is the author of Wiki Government: How Technology Can Make Government Better, Democracy Stronger and Citizens More Powerful, which has also appeared in Arabic, Russian, Chinese and in an audio edition, and co-editor of The State of Play: Law, Games and Virtual Worlds. Her next book Smart Citizens: Smarter State will appear with Harvard University Press.
Maria Margarita Zuleta
General Director of Colombia Compra Eficiente in the Government of Colombia
Governments materialize public policy through contracts this is why contract matters to all of us. Open Contracting is about promoting the disclosure of all contracts to spend public budget and deliver goods and services to the citizens and citizens’ engagement with the contracts disclosed.
María Margarita (Paca) Zuleta is a Colombian lawyer with more than 20 years of experience in project development, 19 years in the private sector and 4 years in the Colombian government. She acted as Deputy Minister of Justice and as Director of the Presidential Program against Corruption, where she wrote a complete action plan along with civil society organizations, government and private sector companies (edited in 2005). In 2012, Paca was appointed the first General Director of Colombia Compra Eficiente, the National Public Procurement Agency created by President Juan Manuel Santos.
In the extractive industries sector the award and implementation of large contracts and concessions is critical.
Open Contracting has the potential to transformation public divestitures of land, such as the concession, lease or sale of land to a private entity...
Global principles that can serve as a guide for all of those seeking to advance open contracting around the world.
Standards for disclosure of contracts and to build capacities for collecting, publishing, storing, accessing and sharing contract data.
Illustrating the value of open contracting by surfacing lessons learned and engaging in research, monitoring and evaluation.
Building awareness of the importance of open contracting, promoting and disseminating content about open contracting in the public sphere.
Supporting practitioners and organizations with trainings, knowledge exchanges, coaching, seed funding and tools.