INTERNATIONAL UMBRELLA ORGANIZATIONS
ACE Electoral Knowledge Network About the ACE Electoral Knowledge Network
The ACE website is an online knowledge repository that provides comprehensive information and customised advice on electoral processes. The website contains in-depth articles, global statistics and data, an Encyclopaedia of Elections, information on electoral assistance, observation and professional development, region- and country-specific resources, daily electoral news, an election calendar, quizzes, expert networks and much, much more. The ACE website is freely accessible to all and the number of visitors is constantly growing – as of January 2010 the website has more than 1,2 million unique visitors per year.
The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association mobilizes its Parliaments, Legislatures, their Members and staff to advance the consideration of good democratic governance and the institutional and professional development of its membership. It works in the Commonwealth through meetings and publications to discuss:
• The democratic representation of all sections of society and both genders;
• Parliamentary oversight of the executive;
• Parliamentary involvement in formulating legislation and government policy;
• The role of small Parliaments;
• Parliamentary outreach to the people, and
• The independence of Parliament from the executive government.
• Consider questions of international interest and concern and expresses its views on such issues in order to bring about action by parliaments and parliamentarians;
• Contribute to the defence and promotion of human rights – an essential factor of parliamentary democracy and development;
• Contribute to better knowledge of the working of representative institutions and to the strengthening and development of their means of action.
The International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) operates as an umbrella organisation for the external government audit community. For more than 50 years it has provided an institutionalised framework for supreme audit institutions to promote development and transfer of knowledge, improve government auditing worldwide and enhance professional capacities, standing and influence of member SAIs in their respective countries. In keeping with INTOSAI’s motto, ‘Experientia mutua omnibus prodest’, the exchange of experience among INTOSAI members and the findings and insights which result, are a guarantee that government auditing continuously progresses with new developments.INTOSAI is an autonomous, independent and non-political organisation. It is a non-governmental organisation with special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations.
INTOSAI was founded in 1953 at the initiative of Emilio Fernandez Camus, then President of the SAI of Cuba.
International Commission of Jurists
The International Commission of Jurists is dedicated to the primacy, coherence and implementation of international law and principles that advance human rights.
What distinguishes the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) is its impartial, objective and authoritative legal approach to the protection and promotion of human rights through the rule of law.
The ICJ provides legal expertise at both the international and national levels to ensure that developments in international law adhere to human rights principles and that international standards are implemented at the national level.
The Transparency and Accountability Initiative
The Transparency and Accountability Initiative (T/A Initiative) is a donor collaborative working to expand the impact and scale of transparency and accountability interventions.
They work over three areas.
1. Learning about where, when and how initiatives inform effective interventions.
2. Harnessing the potential of new technologies throughout the transparency and accountability movement.
3. Policy and programming in key transparency and accountability fields,
- Budget process
- Climate change
- Donor aid
- Financial system reform
- Natural resource governance
- Open Government Partnership
In 1993, a few individuals decided to take a stance against corruption and created Transparency International. Now present in more than 100 countries, the movement works relentlessly to stir the world’s collective conscience and bring about change. Much remains to be done to stop corruption, but much has also been achieved, including:
• the creation of international anti-corruption conventions
• the prosecution of corrupt leaders and seizures of their illicitly gained riches
• national elections won and lost on tackling corruption
• companies held accountable for their behaviour both at home and abroad.
US Immigration Centre – Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act Facts
This site includes a listing of US departments and their various guidelines to requesting information on their FOIA pages.
INTERNATIONAL CITIZEN ORGANIZATIONS
Common Cause – “Everyone’s organised but the people”
More than 200,000 US based members and supporters lobby for social reform, including reforms to the US funding system for election campaigns. A citizens activist organisation founded in 1970.
This website offers comprehensive scrutiny of UK parliaments and politicians. It tallies individual politicians contributions, and provides links to debates and written answers as well as giving alerts to issues coming up.
An excellent guide to money in USA politics. A website of the Centre for Responsive Politics, a research body tracking political funding and donations
In addition to our core team, we collaborate with a global network of more than 1,300 in-country contributors and partners who take our technologies, tools, and information to where they are most useful – the local level.
There are individuals and groups in every country – across the civic, public, and private sectors – working towards transparency reforms. Quite often, these groups lack common data and standards, collaboration tools, and the ability to share their information – even in the same country. Giving those groups common tools, shared research methods, and access to their colleagues propels them more quickly towards advances in transparency and accountability.
In its simplest description, a constituent goes to the PoliticalSheepdog.com website and registers for free. The constituent chooses from legislation associated with auctions on the PoliticalSheepdog.com website with a click of the mouse. Then, he or she bids for the amount of money that he or she desires in payment for their services as a constituent lobbyist. Later, the constituent lobbies their legislator for 5 to 15 minutes on a piece of legislation. If the legislation is passed into law and the constituent places a winning bid, then the government will pay for their lobbying services.
The Financial Secrecy Index (FSI) creates a ranking which identifies the jurisdictions that are most aggressive in providing secrecy in international finance, and which most actively shun co-operation with other jurisdictions. It attaches a weighting to each jurisdiction, according to the scale of cross-border financial services activity that it hosts.
The two measures – the opacity score, and the weighting, are combined to create the Financial Secrecy Index. Nothing like this has been done before.
SourceWatch Portal: Frontgroups
A front group is an organization that purports to represent one agenda while in reality it serves some other interest whose sponsorship is hidden or rarely mentioned — typically, a corporate or government sponsor. The tobacco industry is notorious for using front groups to create confusion about the health risks associated with smoking, but other industries use similar tactics as well. The pharmaceutical and healthcare industries use front groups disguised as “patients rights” advocates to market their products and to lobby against government policies that might affect their profits. Food companies, corporate polluters, politicians — anyone who has a message that they are trying to sell to a skeptical audience is tempted to set up a front group to deliver messages that they know the public will reject if the identity of the sponsor is known.
Freedom of Information Advocates Network (FOIAnet)
The Freedom of Information Advocates Network (FOIAnet) is an international information-sharing network of organizations and individuals working to promote the right of access to information. Members of FOIAnet are civil society organizations with active programmes to promote the right to know. FOIAnet also runs a discussion list for news and debate on the right of access to information; there are currently over 400 people on this list, including CSO representatives and lawyers, academics, information commissioners and others with a specialized interest in the right to information. The network launched and promotes International Right to Know Day which takes place on 28th September of every year.
The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. To achieve this mission, the Foundations seek to shape public policies that assure greater fairness in political, legal, and economic systems and safeguard fundamental rights.
The Technology for Transparency Network
The Technology for Transparency Network is a research and mapping project that aims to improve understanding of the current state of online technology projects that increase transparency and accountability in Central & Eastern Europe, East Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia, South Asia, the former Soviet Union. The project is supported by the Transparency and Accountability Initiative, a donor collaborative that includes the Ford Foundation, Hivos, the International Budget Partnership, the Omidyar Network, the Open Society Institute, the Revenue Watch Institute, the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.
Over the past few years we have observed the formation of an expanding and increasingly global movement of technology and digital media projects aimed at promoting government transparency, accountability, and public participation in political processes.
The International Budget Partnership Open Budget Survey
The International Budget Partnership collaborates with a large and diverse network of civil society organizations around the world to fight poverty and improve governance by reforming government budget systems and influencing budget policies. At the heart of this work are efforts to make government budgeting more transparent and participatory, more responsive to national priorities, better able to resist corruption, and more efficient and effective.
In support of this collaboration, the IBP provides technical and financial assistance, comparative research opportunities, information exchange, and peer networking.
The Open Budget Survey is the only independent, comparative, and regular measure of budget transparency and accountability around the world. The 2010 Survey finds that 74 of the 94 countries assessed fail to meet basic standards of transparency and accountability with national budgets.
WikiLeaks is a website that published anonymous submissions and leaks of sensitive governmental, corporate, organizational, or religious documents, while attempting to preserve the anonymity and untraceability of its contributors.
The Sunshine Press (WikiLeaks) is an non-profit organization funded by human rights campaigners, investigative journalists, technologists and the general public