TAI Weekly

TAI Weekly|Billions Power Healthy Information Ecosystems

By TAI (Role at TAI)


African finance ministers met last week to push for an ambitious replenishment of the World Bank’s International Development Association financing for the poorest countries. Blair Glencorse urges that they similarly push the Bank to scale “bottom-up, citizen-centric accountability mechanisms” and mainstream citizen engagement. Similarly, Bright Simons, building on the policy not  that we featured last week, encourages the Bank and IFIs to “enhance project governance and capacity across all key stakeholders”.

Read how participatory budgeting can bridge ideological divides, drawing on lessons from Brazil.

Annabel Short argues that mapping trends in who owns and shapes land is vital for rights advocacy. Two dimensions are important: strengthening transparency and accountability around ownership and challenging the status quo—advancing creative new approaches to how humans value and imagine our relationship to land.

Matthew Bui and Bianca Wylie make the case for counterpublic analysis within tech-driven public-private partnerships (PPPs) like Sidewalk Toronto. Authors emphasize the need to critically examine power dynamics, advocate for marginalized stakeholders, and increase public agency in future projects.

Argentina’s government has launched a new online transparency portal with a focus on citizen participation. The National Transparency Portal features a catalog of citizen participation spaces in public policymaking and a federal directory of civil society organizations involved in transparency policies.

New research identifies 25 cases over 20 years where over $2.6 billion of suspicious funds entered United States commercial real estate. These funds originated from 14 countries, including Iran, North Korea, and Russia, and were used to buy various properties, from hotels to supermarkets. 

As attention to tax revives, check out the latest from Tax Inspectors Without Borders, one of the longer-established responses to help countries bring in revenues.

Layne Hofman makes the case for the fiscal social contract and the human rights economy as submitted to the UN Human Rights Council.

As protests continued over Georgia’s foreign agents bill, the ruling party rushes through a controversial tax law, fueling fears that the country will become a black money hub to benefit the party’s billionaire leader, among others.

In its latest regional review, ARTICLE 19 examines the state of freedom of expression in Cuba, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras (in Spanish).

Essential Listening

Listen to this podcast on nurturing the power of civil society with Romy Krämer from the Guerrilla Foundation. See, too, our interview with her last year.


CHANDLER FOUNDATION: In the latest product under the aegis of the Chandler Sessions on anti-corruption, Chris Stone and Tanka Mani Sharma, Nepal's former Auditor General, describe how auditors can help reduce corruption by spotting integrity gaps.

LUMINATE: Join Luminate’s event with EL PAÍS México: Women in Power: Political Representation and Technology in Elections!

MACARTHUR FOUNDATION: Local news can build community cohesion, foster civic participation, create shared understanding, and hold power to account, writes John Palfrey in his Annual Essay.

TAI SECRETARIAT: Explore philanthropic funding's role in nurturing Healthy Information Ecosystems through TAI’s report, featuring several of our members. Our very own Cristina Ordóñez shares how it intersects with governmental initiatives and addresses global challenges like disinformation. The scan can help you identify funding gaps and where to invest for a more resilient information environment.


The Laudes Foundation, Wallace Global Fund, and Ford Foundation commissioned a mapping of organizations and efforts driving just transitions across various sectors and regions. Conducted by Climate Horizons, the research identified over 600 initiatives across Europe, Africa, Latin America, and Southeast Asia. It aims to support ecosystem development, strategic grant-making, and collaboration efforts.

Funders have several beliefs and assumptions, along with the anxiety that comes with giving up control, resulting in very few of them moving towards more unrestricted funding. To unpack the dynamics at play, Stanford Social Innovation Review interviewed advisers and alumni of the Just Economy Institute.

Conversations about transparency, accountability, and collaboration have dominated the nonprofit world for years, yet large-scale change remains elusive. Philanthropic platform, Candid, reflects that grant makers and organizations directly serving nonprofits must be open to feedback, commit to behavior change, and prioritize the whole nonprofit field as much as, if not more than, their own institutions.


Two new books for your reading pile - the first looks at corporate capture of development, revealing hidden impacts of public-private partnerships on women’s human rights worldwide. The second, In the Long Run: The Future as a Political Idea, as reviewed here, argues that societies need the hope that comes with an “open future” as a precondition for the successful functioning of democratic regimes. 


Ensuring Justice in the Critical Mineral Boom for the Energy Transition

Festival Godwin Boateng and Jacqueline Klopp ask whether the electric vehicle revolution will prove a blessing or curse for improving extremely problematic extractive industry practices and mineral supply chains that have exploited developing regions. They argue that responsible sourcing of critical minerals is vital for an equitable energy transition.

Recognizing that need, UN Secretary-General António Guterres has launched a high-level panel to catalyze international cooperation in ensuring that local communities receive equitable benefits and durable economic value from mineral extraction for the energy transition. Suneeta Kaimal explains that Guterres' panel aims to strengthen community benefit-sharing and uphold international standards in mineral supply chains. 

And, yes, there are some positive signs of progress, such as indigenous groups Aliansi Masyarakat Adat Nusantara and Southeast Asian Public Interest Lawyers in Indonesia winning a court case protecting small islands from nickel mining. Organizations like ClimateWorks are supporting collaboration on initiatives for responsible sourcing, robust standards, and circular economy approaches.

However, a new report also starkly documents the severe pollution and human toll of industrial cobalt mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A similar study in Mali further highlights extractives' local impacts.

We shouldn’t forget extraction that serves the building trade, too, and its contribution to climate problems. Liz McKeon and Amol Mehra highlight the challenge. While buildings contribute nearly 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions, less than 4% of climate philanthropy goes towards funding the transition to sustainable construction and a just transition for workers in this sector.


Watch the video of this Dynamic Conversation on Politics, Development and Change from the Thinking and Working Politically community.




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