Monitoring of the National Plan for Food and Nutrition Security (PLANSAN) (BR0080)
to develop and implement a monitoring methodology for the National Plan for Food and Nutrition Security, with the aim of enhancing the transparency of government actions and the accountability of financial resources for food and nutrition security.
IRM End of Term Status Summary
Commitment 5.1. Monitoring of the National Plan for Food and Nutrition Security (PLANSAN)
Commitment Text: To develop and implement a monitoring methodology for the National Plan for Food and Nutrition Security, with the aim of enhancing the transparency of government actions and the accountability of financial resources for food and nutrition security.
Responsible institution: Ministry of Social Development and Fight against Hunger
Supporting institution: None
Start date: Not specified End date: 14 June 2014
The 2012-2015 National Plan for Food and Nutrition Security (PLANSAN) integrates the activities of government entities working on issues related to production, strengthening family agriculture, food supply, and healthy nutrition promotion. The commitment aimed to systematise goals and expand the monitoring of the plan through channels such as the National Conference, the National Food Security and Nutrition Council, and the Inter-ministerial Chamber of Food Security and Nutrition.
During the implementation period, the government developed a monitoring strategy and created the PLANSAN Computerized Monitoring System (SISPLANSAN), to which government bodies contributed information and data about the execution of PLANSAN’s goals. Throughout the period, these goals were systematised and prioritised (though not made public), resulting in a total of 150 goals from approximately 300 at the start of the action plan. In addition, the government prepared a report with specific targets that was presented at the IV National Conference of Food Security and Nutrition +2 in March 2014.
Did it open government?
Access to information: Marginal
Civic participation: Marginal
Public accountability: Did not change
The commitment had the potential to improve access to information by implementing a monitoring methodology for PLANSAN, and frequently releasing updated reports on the use of financial resources for food and nutrition security. The presence of civil society representatives in PLANSAN councils also presented an opportunity to improve civic participation and public accountability. However, the online PLANSAN monitoring system was implemented within the agency only, and was not available to the public. While the government published and presented a status report with specific targets at the IV National Conference of Food and Security +2, this was an incremental step forward in light of the fact that: (1) these conferences are not new; they go back to 1994; and (2) citizens did not have access to the online data, which would have enabled real-time monitoring.
Nonetheless, the conference served as a space for civil society and government to discuss the findings of the status report and make proposals. The coordinator of advisers at the Institute for Socioeconomic Studies (INESC) stated that “the conference was extremely productive, revealing the growth of debate that can be perceived in the quality of proposals made to improve the Plan. It is clear that meaningful progress has been made in recent years, though it is also evident that major gaps need to be filled.”[Note 122: INESC, “Encontro Nacional 4a+2 discute Segurança Alimentar e Nutricional,” 21 March 2014, http://bit.ly/2nOSbhg. ] To be sure, citizens received more information about the implementation of the PLANSAN, and were involved in discussing the topic with government. For this reason, the commitment made a positive contribution to both access to information and civic participation. Since citizens were not involved directly in monitoring implementation in real-time and did not have a mechanism to translate the information they received at the conference into consequences or change, there was no change in public accountability.
The commitment is not included in Brazil’s next action plan. For the future, the IRM researcher recommends including civil society in more steps of the monitoring process, making the PLANSAN’s online monitoring system available to the public, and establishing channels for citizens to hold government agencies accountable for implementing the PLANSAN.