The NGO Infocentre, Centre for Civil Communications and EHO implement the „USAID Project for Transparent Governance“, in the period September 2009-August 2012. Starting from the point that greater transparency, responsibility and accountability are the best instruments to fight corruption, this project aims to contribute to revitalisation of mechanisms for more transparent, responsible and accountable work of local governments, increased participation by citizens and business community in local decision-making processes, and exchange of good practices between local self-governments in the country.
The first phase of the project includes a survey of current practices applied by local self-governments in four pilot-municipalities in Eastern Macedonia. The survey aims to provide relevant indicators on citizens’, civic associations’ and business community’s satisfaction with the services provided by the municipalities, and to detect eventual weaknesses in the work of the municipalities in terms of transparent, efficient and accountable work.
The satisfaction of citizens, NGOs and the business community were measured through:
- How well informed they were about the work of municipal administrations;
- Their involvement in decision-making processes;
- Possibilities they have to point out at weaknesses in the functioning of municipal administrations and the work of public servants; and
- Accountability they get from the municipality.
The opportunity that, in addition to users, representatives of municipal administration were given to present their own views on the efficiency of provision of services allowed us to gather information on the existence of a system of procedures and actions that would guarantee reliable and constant quality of functioning of municipal administrations.
The results of the survey were used, among other things, to determine:
- If a municipality informs the citizens about its work and activities in a timely and appropriate fashion?
- If the citizens are involved in decision-making processes and how?
- How does a municipality cooperate with civil associations and business community?
- What are the weaknesses in the functioning of municipal administrations?
- Does a municipality have internal mechanisms in place to detect illegal and unethical actions?
- Does a municipality implements active anti-corruption policies and whether the citizens are involved in this battle?
- Is a municipality accountable regarding the results of its functioning?
The results of the survey will be used as basis for a set of recommendations on the measures that need to be implemented to overcome detected weaknesses and improve the functioning of local administrations.