TAI Weekly

TAI Weekly|2024's Information Fearful Realities

By TAI (Role at TAI)


Open Contracting Partnership unveiled a new organizational strategy and a bold goal: “We want to enable one billion people to live in more equitable, prosperous and sustainable communities by 2030 by improving US$2 trillion in public procurement spending.” 

John Githongo, reflecting on thirty years of activismt, contemplates the evolving narrative of anti-corruption efforts in Africa, transitioning from Western paradigms to emerging agendas.

What can be learned from the governance trajectory of African countries since the beginning of the 21st century?  A new World Bank report offers insights.

CIVICUS Watchlist highlights four countries experiencing a serious decline in respect for civic space

Cambodia's 30-year journey in establishing national parks sounds positive on the face of it, but a disregard for local communities and Indigenous peoples, coupled with benefits for powerful business interests, has led to high deforestation rates despite 41% of the country being designated as nature reserves. 

Euan Ritchie's analysis confirms that donors are creative in counting what is considered climate finance

How do you spot greenwashing in a corporate sustainability report? There is a new guide to spotting false environmental claims.

Instead of carbon offsets, we need “contributions” to forests, argue Libby Blanchard, William Anderegg and Barbara Haya. They argue a switch to a “contributions” framing could preserve a crucial flow of climate investment, while moving incentives away from bad, low integrity offsets.  

The UN Global Compact launched a Transformational Governance Corporate Toolkit for companies to educate employees on implementing greater accountability, integrity and transparency in business. 

A couple of weeks back we mentioned the launch of a new book on civil society roles in tax - now there is a detailed review from Paolo Mauro (in case you don’t have time to read the whole book!) 


Roula Inglesi-Lotz argues that greater trust in institutions would make people, policymakers, and businesses more inclined to adopt renewable energy practices.


USAID: Signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) to strengthen strategic engagement on a global level. The MoU recognizes that transparency, a core tenet of the EITI, is crucial for fostering institutional norms around accountability, and responsiveness. 

PACKARD FOUNDATION: Welcomed Benjamin Chou as Democracy, Rights, and Governance Program Officer for the US. In this inaugural role, Chou will support the development and implementation of the Foundation’s initiative seeking to advance a thriving, resilient, pro-equity democracy.

MACARTHUR FOUNDATION: Highlights how the Behavioural Insights Team and partners are facilitating anti-corruption progress in Nigeria.


Donors are starting to adopt a poly-crisis philanthropy model to address the multiple, interconnected global crises affecting the communities they seek to support. But what is poly-crisis philanthropy?

A new report by PARTOS makes the case for Feminist MEL, aiming for a kind of change that is non-linear; it is complex, takes time and is based on participation and power sharing.

The Urgent Action Sister Funds recognize that reporting is critical to MEL, but the well-being of their partners must be above everything. They try to keep reporting light and flexible according to the needs of their partners. Trust is fundamental.

How do we cope with the anxiety and trauma of escalating and converging crises to sustain a capacity for hope that can help us drive a different future? Tamzin Ractliffe is calling for ‘strategic hope’


Watch the fascinating Oxford University great carbon market debate - is it over for offsetting? 


2024's Information Landscape - Bleak and/or terrifying?

TAI joined with the OECD for discussion of the state of funding for healthy information environments this past week - stay tuned for our reports to come. Yet the world keeps reminding us of the need for more investment. See the Safety of Journalists Platform's 2024 report flagging concern over the treatment of journalists across 46 Council of Europe member states, Russia, and Belarus. The report underscores serious apprehensions regarding the use of spyware against journalists, abusive lawsuits, and the growing number of journalists forced into exile. (Don’t forget last week’s feature on spyware on journalists’ phones.)

Surveillance issues also featured in last week’s “Fact & Fiction: The Future of Democracy” Nobel Prize Dialogue, where Maria Ressa was among those demanding that we defend journalism as an antidote to tyranny, but also demand more accountable tech. That means asking those who built big tech to end surveillance for profit and coded bias. We need to learn the lessons fast to shape better governance of AI. While acknowledging the societal benefits of AI tools, Lina Srivastava expresses deep concerns about unchecked development in the hands of primarily male tech executives. A profit-driven approach may again exacerbate issues such as algorithmic bias, discrimination, and exploitation, posing significant risks to social systems.

What of the state of access to information? The Africa Freedom of Information Center looks at the information needs in the context of 19 African countries heading to elections in 2024, while UNESCO launches three new briefs focusing on access to public information in Latin America and the Caribbean. Both resources stressed the importance of strengthening democracy and human rights with a special emphasis on vulnerable groups and environmental considerations.For their part, the OECD is urging the implementation of policies to enhance the transparency, accountability, and plurality of information sources in their new Facts not Fakes report. Worth the read.




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