(Cross-posted from the official Making All Voices Count Blog)
The Global Innovation Competition called for new, ‘out-of-the-box’ ideas to enhance government transparency and accountability in Making All Voices Count’s 12 programme countries.
From December 16, 2013 – January 30, 2014 the public have been invited to have their say and so far, a total of 46,000 votes have been cast by 27,000 users. (Now three days later it is 52,000 votes and 33,000 users.)
“As it stands, the top 3 ideas have 2,000+ votes and with 3 out of the 4 OGP thematic areas represented in the top 5, and the competition is likely to heat up in this final leg,” says Declan Ottaro Making All Voices Count’s South to South Lab Manager.
All entries are based on the key goals of the Open Government Partnership‘s eligibility criteria: Budget Transparency, Access to Information, Asset Disclosure and Citizen Engagement.
“Innovation can mean many things,” Declan notes. “Adaptation of an idea and transferring it to a new context can be innovative. So too, can bringing different types of actors into conversation with one another. All of our entries have demonstrated innovation in a different way, and we’re excited to see how the public responds.”
Making All Voices Count acknowledges that solutions to problems such as enhancing government transparency and accountability are complex. Those ‘on the ground’ often have the most intimate knowledge of issues, and therefore are most equipped to identify solutions.
“The exciting aspect of our competition is that we’re asking citizens to tell us which innovations are most relevant,” says Mathias Antonsson, Programme Manager for Making All Voices Count’s Innovation Component.
“Too often transparency and accountability initiatives don’t review the demand of the end-user. However, the competition, by inviting the public to tell us which entries should advance, directly engages with them.”
To ensure entrants from less ICT-enabled communities, who may not have the same opportunity to arouse online voter support, aren’t disadvantaged, the Global Innovation Committee – implementing consortium partners Ushahidi, Hivos and IDS – will be able to advance ‘wildcards’ into the semi-final round.
On February 5 2014, a total of 30 semi-finalists will be announced and undergo a process of peer review. The Global Innovation Competition Jury, a select group of technology, innovation, open governance and business experts, will be to advance wildcards into the final round.
Through this process 10 finalists will emerge based on innovativeness, scalability and potential for impact. All finalists will be flown to Nairobi, Kenya to participate in the Global Innovation Week March 31 – April 3, 2014.
During the Global Innovation Gala Night, April 3 2014, the Global Innovation Jury will announce the Global Innovation Competition winners.
The first-place winner will receive a £65,000 grant plus expert mentorship over a six-month period, two runners-up will each receive a £35,000 grant plus expert mentorship over a six-month period. Seven smaller prizes of £5,000 will also be awarded.