Commitments

02 e-calendar for financing civil society

Country: Serbia
Action Plan: Serbia Action Plan 2018-2020
IRM Report: Serbia End-of-Term Report 2016–2018
Year Action Plan: 2018
 |  End Date: 1/31/2020

From the Action Plan

 
Development of an e-Calendar of public calls for financing of projects and programmes of civil society organisations from budget funds of public administration bodies of 13 the Republic of Serbia COMMITMENT 2: Development of an e-Calendar of public calls for financing of projects and programmes of civil society organisations from budget funds of public administration bodies of the Republic of Serbia October 2018 – January 2020) Lead implementing agency Office for Cooperation with the Civil Society Description of Commitment Problem addressed by the commitment Since 2013, at the beginning of each calendar year the Office for Cooperation with the Civil Society (“the Office”) has been collecting information from state and provincial administration bodies on planned public calls for financing of projects/programmes of civil society organisations (CSOs) and, in accordance with collected data, has been preparing and publishing the Calendar of Public Calls for financing of projects and programmes of associations and other civil society organisations from budget funds of state administration bodies of the Republic of Serbia and the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina (“the Calendar of Public Calls”). The Calendar is prepared as follows: the Office distributes to state and provincial administration bodies a form consisting of an Excel sheet where they enter titles of and fields covered by public calls, participants, provisional deadlines and allocated funds and other relevant data and then return forms to the Office. All collected forms are processed and entered into a single Excel sheet and are published on the official website of the Office in the form of the Calendar of Public Calls in a machine-readable format. The new Regulation on Funds to Support Programmes or Missing Amount of Funds for Programmes of Public Interest implemented by Associations (Official Gazette of RS No. 16/18) introduces important novelties aimed at increasing transparency of funds awarding process from the moment such funds are planned, by establishing a duty to publish an annual plan of announcement of public calls by 31 January at the latest and to submit information to the Office, which then publishes the Calendar of Public Calls of all competent authorities on its official website. In addition to introduction of the mandatory Calendar of Public Calls, these provisions also include local self-government units among bodies which must submit data to the Office (so far, data have been collected from state and provincial administration bodies on a voluntary basis). Also, since 2011, the Office has been monitoring the execution of public calls for the award of budget funds to associations and other civil society organisations through preparation of the Annual Summary Report on spending of funds provided and paid to associations and other civil society organisations from the budget of the Republic of Serbia as support to programme activities (“the Annual Summary Report”). This Report is 14 prepared on the basis of data provided to the Office by administration bodies at all three government levels (national, provincial and local) through online questionnaires, which are then processed and integrated in summary data on the amount of funds awarded, the number of supported projects and programmes, their scope, the manner of funds awarding etc. According to the most recent data made available by the Office, notwithstanding the duty to publish results of public calls on official websites of competent authorities, these results were published in only 77% of all cases; notice boards of authorities are used as an additional manner of publication, while in 8% of cases results are not published. However, although a high percentage of the results is published, it has been observed in practice that they are most often not published in a machine-readable format, which prevents research and analytical actions and further crosschecking of data. Practical implementation has also revealed there is a need for a central location (a single database) where data on all public calls planned, published and implemented by public administration bodies and their results would be available in a machine-readable format. Main objective The commitment includes development of the Calendar of Public Calls as an application through which competent authorities at all government levels would publish the following: • Data on planned public calls intended for financing CSOs in the current year, in accordance with the Regulation (before they are announced, at the beginning of the year); • Issued public calls with all bidding documents (or a link to a web address where it is available); • Results of announced public calls, including main data on supported projects/programmes and beneficiaries; Also, results of the search of the Calendar could be downloaded in a machine-readable format (open data). Apart from being a database, the application would also contain the Calendar itself, which could be searched based on various criteria (field of public call, competent authority, time limits etc.), while downloading of search results in a machinereadable format would enable further processing of contained data for analytical purposes. The general objective is to increase the transparency of budget funding of CSOs throughout the entire process and to create a single record of all public calls issued by public administration bodies on a single location. 15 Accordingly, it is expected that compliance with this commitment would significantly increase the transparency of CSO funding, facilitate availability of all public calls and data about them to the interested public and strengthen the capacities of government bodies in the field of e-government in Serbia. How will this commitment contribute to problem solving? The electronic calendar of public calls will significantly improve the process of monitoring all planned public calls intended for financing CSOs which has been used so far, including preparation of the Calendar and the Annual Summary Report, and improve their availability for use and simplify their further analysis. In addition, it will facilitate and improve access to information about planned and announced public calls and, most importantly, about their results, by creating a single record of all such information. Overall, this commitment will increase transparency and visibility of support to CSOs by all administration bodies, as well as the full amount of planned funds allocated by the Republic of Serbia at all levels to finance associations and other CSOs. The way in which this commitment is relevant to further advancing OGP values The commitment is relevant for fiscal transparency of public authorities because it involves publishing of more information, improvement in the quality of published information and increased availability of information on public calls and funding of programmes and projects of CSOs from budget funds in general. Publishing of data in a machine-readable format provides an additional value for this commitment, which ensures further processing of data and their use for analytical purposes. Finally, the commitment also involves the use of new technologies and innovation, which additionally increases its relevance for further advancing the OGP values. Additional information Activity with a verifiable deliverable and completion date Start Date: End Date: 1. Structuring of the questionnaire Q4 2018 (October 2018) Q4 2018 (December 2018) 16 and development of software for data collecting 2. Provision of support to public administration bodies in completion of the questionnaire Q4 2018 (December 2018) Q1 2019 (January 2019) 3. Promotion of the e-Calendar of Public Calls Q1 2019 (February 2019) Q1 2019 (March 2019) 4. Monitoring and support to public administration bodies in publishing of results of public calls Q1 2019 (March 2019) Q4 2019 (December 2019) 5. Analysis of the use of the eCalendar of Public Calls for 2019 Q4 2019 (December 2019) Q1 2020 (January 2020) Contact information Name of a responsible person in the implementing agency Danilo Rodić Title, Department Junior Advisor at the Department fоr Planning and Creating Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development Email and phone number danilo.rodic@civilnodrustvo.gov.rs ; 011/311-38-59 Other actors involved Administration Office for Information Technology and e-Government Civil sector organisations, private sector, working groups UNDP, CSOs, SCTM

Lead Institution: Office for Cooperation with the Civil Society


Support Institution: Office for Information Technology and e-Government, UNDP, CSOs, SCTM

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From the IRM Review

 

Overview

Design

Specificity

Not Reviewed
None
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Relevant to OGP values

Potential Impact

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None
Unclear
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Moderate
Transformative

Implementation

Completion at Midterm

Not Reviewed
Unclear
Not Started
Limited
Substantial
Complete

Results

Did it Open Government?

Worsened
Did Not Change
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Outstanding


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