Skip Navigation
France

Transparency of Development Aid (FR0032)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: France Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy and Finance, Agence française de développement

Support Institution(s): Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy and Finance, Agence française de développement

Policy Areas

Access to Information, Aid, E-Government, Open Data

IRM Review

IRM Report: France Design Report 2018-2020

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Improving transparency in public development aid
Challenges
The conclusions reached by the 2011 Busan High-Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness call on donor countries to increase traceability and efficacy of development aid. For France, transparency in public aid, combined with its better foreseeability, meets a democratic need for accountability, understanding and legitimacy of French development cooperation policies. Such transparency is also beneficial as it improves aid effectiveness and limits cases of corruption.
Aims
Improving accessibility of data on public development aid and widening the scope of published data (geographical areas, players, etc.)
The Interministerial Committee meeting of 30 November 2016 highlighted France’s commitment to “improving the transparency and accountability of French aid” (Focus V).
Information on operational deployment of aid is made available systematically in the Creditor Reporting System (CRS) managed by the OECD. Budgetary information and public development aid performance indicators may be consulted on the performance- publique.budget.gouv.fr platform.
In order to facilitate reuse, raw data on Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs (MEAE) and Agence française de développement (AFD) development projects are openly published on the data.gouv.fr platform as well as on a single platform (http://www.transparence- aide.gouv.fr/), proactively compared with data published by the OECD.
This single platform provides better clarity of data, enabling users to view projects implemented by France on a map via a geolocation tool. Users can also find each project’s characteristics (implementation date, description, type of aid and financial data) on the site.
France is therefore continuing its efforts and making further progress with regard to transparency and accountability in its development and international solidarity policy, in order to meet the highest standards, both in the Development Aid Committee and for other initiatives, the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) in particular.
Complementing reports on accountability and information on France’s action with regard to aid, the following actions are proposed:
widening the scope of data currently published;
France National action plan – 2018-2020
publishing new data associated with transparency in public development aid;
improving clarity of information on transparency in public development aid.
The road map in detail
ACTIONS

TIMESCALE

Extending publication of data on public development aid to new geographical areas (MEAE)
S1 2019 Publishing data on public development aid provided by new players such as Proparco (AFD)
S2 2019
Merging publication of data on a single platform
S2 2018
Publishing data on the impact and/or results of AFD projects
S2 2018
Continuing to provide the OECD’s Development Aid Committee with data for publication of quality data in compliance with the OECD’s latest standards S2 2018-S1 2019

IRM Midterm Status Summary

3. Improving transparency in public development aid

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan:

The conclusions reached by the 2011 Busan High-Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness call on donor countries to increase traceability and efficacy of development aid. For France, transparency in public aid, combined with its better foreseeability, meets a democratic need for accountability, understanding and legitimacy of French development cooperation policies. Such transparency is also beneficial as it improves aid effectiveness and limits cases of corruption.

The Interministerial Committee meeting of 30 November 2016 highlighted France’s commitment to “improving the transparency and accountability of French aid” (Focus V).

Information on operational deployment of aid is made available systematically in the Creditor Reporting System (CRS) managed by the OECD. Budgetary information and public development aid performance indicators may be consulted on the performance- publique.budget.gouv.fr platform.

In order to facilitate reuse, raw data on Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs (MEAE) and Agence française de développement (AFD) development projects are openly published on the data.gouv.fr platform as well as on a single platform (http://www.transparence- aide.gouv.fr/), proactively compared with data published by the OECD.

This single platform provides better clarity of data, enabling users to view projects implemented by France on a map via a geolocation tool. Users can also find each project’s characteristics (implementation date, description, type of aid and financial data) on the site.

France is therefore continuing its efforts and making further progress with regard to transparency and accountability in its development and international solidarity policy, in order to meet the highest standards, both in the Development Aid Committee and for other initiatives, the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) in particular.

Complementing reports on accountability and information on France’s action with regard to aid, the following actions are proposed:

  • widening the scope of data currently published;
  • publishing new data associated with transparency in public development aid;
  • improving clarity of information on transparency in public development aid. [16]

Milestones

3.1 Extending publication of data on public development aid to new geographical areas (MEAE)

3.2 Publishing data on public development aid provided by new players such as Proparco (AFD)

3.3 Merging publication of data on a single platform

3.4 Publishing data on the impact and/or results of AFD projects

3.5 Continuing to provide the OECD’s Development Aid Committee with data for publication of quality data in compliance with the OECD’s latest standards

Start Date: 2019

End Date: 2020

Context and Objectives

At the 2011 Busan summit on aid effectiveness, the French government committed to make information about its development aid projects open and accessible by 2015. France has since then made several commitments about the transparency of development aid, [17] including such commitments in the framework of its 2015–2017 OGP action plan.

The last IRM end-of-term report [18] indicated that the French government has made significant efforts to improve transparency. It has also made significant efforts to facilitate access to information regarding international development aid, largely through the centralization of data. Among the three agencies that disburse development funds, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) has made significant improvement, while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEAE) and the Ministry of Economy and Finance lagged behind.

Publish What You Fund placed the AFD and MEAE in the “fair” category of its 2018 Aid Transparency Index. [19] The organization emphasized the agencies needed to improve the comprehensiveness of data published and publish financial and budgetary data. Such data could include disaggregated budgets and project budgets, as well as performance-related information. Publish What You Fund also noted the agencies should encourage the reuse of the data they publish.

This commitment aimed to further improve access to information regarding funding and implementation of development aid projects. It fostered the publication of data regarding additional recipient countries and data from other government agencies (Proparco). It also plans to publish information about the results and impact of development projects. The commitment is relevant to the OGP value of access to information, given that it requires the publication of new data.

Overall, the commitment is verifiable. However, some additional information would have been useful for future assessment. Such information includes details about specific geographical zones for which data should be published and a more detailed list of new agencies whose data should be opened. Also helpful would be information providing more clarity about the data to be published by the AFD—the current phrasing with “and/or” is confusing. Moreover, an indication of the frequency of publication would have been a valuable addition.

This initiative could have a moderate impact. If fully implemented, the commitment would provide new information on activities in regions not yet covered by the transparency policy, on activities of agencies that play an important role in France’s development program. These agencies include Proparco, which is in charge of programs in the private sector. The commitment would also provide information on additional phases of development projects, such as impact assessments.

However, none of the milestones concern the Ministry of Economy and Finance, which is indicated as an implementing agency and was deemed the worst performer in the last evaluation report. The IRM researcher questions the relevance of including Milestone 3.3 regarding publication on a unique platform, since this had already been done within the framework of the 2015–2017 action plan. The same applies to Milestone 3.5 regarding the information flow to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development-Development Aid Committee, since this reflects a previous agreement with another organization outside OGP.

Next steps

The IRM researcher recommends that the commitment be carried forward in the next action plan. The following actions could be considered:

  • The scope of information published could be broadened to financial and budgetary data, including disaggregated budgets, project budgets, and performance-related information.
  • The Ministry of Economy and Finance could be explicitly included in the commitment text.
  • Documentation could be prepared to better inform the public and encourage the reuse of data.
  • The government could develop a function that allows the public to ask questions and make it more visible on the open data platform.
[16] For a Transparent and Collaborative Government: France National Action Plan 2018–2020, https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/France-Action-Plan-2018-2020-English.pdf (accessed on 10 January 2019).
[17] “France,” Publish What You Fund, https://www.publishwhatyoufund.org/donors/france/ (accessed on 7 February 2019).
[18] Sofia Wickberg, Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM): France End-of-Term Report 2015–2017 (Washington, DC: Open Government Partnership, 2018), https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/France_End-of-Term_Report_2015-2017.pdf (accessed on 7 February 2019).
[19] Publish What You Fund. Aid Transparency Index 2018. Online, available at https://www.publishwhatyoufund.org/the-index/2018/ (accessed on 4 September 2019).

Commitments

  1. Transparency of Public Services

    FR0030, 2018, E-Government

  2. Transparency of Public Procurement

    FR0031, 2018, Access to Information

  3. Transparency of Development Aid

    FR0032, 2018, Access to Information

  4. Expand Open Data

    FR0033, 2018, Access to Information

  5. Improved Data Policies and Administration

    FR0034, 2018, Access to Information

  6. Transparency of Public Algorithms

    FR0035, 2018, E-Government

  7. Open Data at Sub-National Level

    FR0036, 2018, Access to Information

  8. State AI Lab

    FR0037, 2018, Automated Decision-Making

  9. Administrative Capacity-Building

    FR0038, 2018, Capacity Building

  10. Public Service Incubators

    FR0039, 2018, Capacity Building

  11. Streamline Data Flows

    FR0040, 2018, Access to Information

  12. Open Etat Forum

    FR0041, 2018, E-Government

  13. Online Procedures Dashboard

    FR0042, 2018, E-Government

  14. Govtech Summit

    FR0043, 2018, Capacity Building

  15. Imrove Public Consultation Mechanisms

    FR0044, 2018, E-Government

  16. International Transparency and Citizen Participation

    FR0045, 2018, Aid

  17. Public Pariticipation in Sustainable Development

    FR0046, 2018, Access to Information

  18. Open Science

    FR0047, 2018, Access to Information

  19. Citizen Involvement in Cour Des Comptes

    FR0048, 2018, Access to Information

  20. Private Sector Transparency

    FR0049, 2018, Access to Information

  21. Access to Information on Public Officials

    FR0050, 2018, Access to Information

  22. Open Regional and Local Authorities' Data

    FR0001, 2015, Access to Information

  23. Publish Municipal Council Decisions and Reports Online

    FR0002, 2015, E-Government

  24. Publish Building Permits in Open Data Format

    FR0003, 2015, Access to Information

  25. Starred commitment Increase Transparency in Public Procurement

    FR0004, 2015, Access to Information

  26. Improve Transparency in International Development Aid

    FR0005, 2015, Access to Information

  27. Open Access to Public Policy Evaluations

    FR0006, 2015, E-Government

  28. Involve Citizens in Cour Des Comptes Work

    FR0007, 2015, Access to Information

  29. Access to Public Officials Transparency Obligations

    FR0008, 2015, Access to Information

  30. Starred commitment Beneficial Ownership

    FR0009, 2015, Anti-Corruption

  31. Transparency in Extractive Industries

    FR0010, 2015, Anti-Corruption

  32. Transparency in International Trade Commercial Negotiations

    FR0011, 2015, Access to Information

  33. Fix My Neighborhood

    FR0012, 2015, E-Government

  34. Digital Fix-It

    FR0013, 2015, Access to Information

  35. Co-Produce Data Infrastructure with Civil Society

    FR0014, 2015, Access to Information

  36. Starred commitment Open Legal Resources

    FR0015, 2015, Access to Information

  37. Reform Participatory Mechanisms

    FR0016, 2015, Open Regulations

  38. Mediation and Justice

    FR0017, 2015, Access to Justice

  39. Starred commitment Open and Circulate Data

    FR0018, 2015, Access to Information

  40. Open Calculation Models and Simulators

    FR0019, 2015, Access to Information

  41. Open Platform for Government Resources

    FR0020, 2015, E-Government

  42. Improve Public Services Through E-Government and User Interaction

    FR0021, 2015, E-Government

  43. Empower Civil Society to Support Schools

    FR0022, 2015, E-Government

  44. Diversify Recruitment Within Public Institutions

    FR0023, 2015, Capacity Building

  45. Culture Change

    FR0024, 2015, Capacity Building

  46. Spread Public Innovation

    FR0025, 2015, Capacity Building

  47. Starred commitment Protect Against Conflicts of Interest

    FR0026, 2015, Anti-Corruption

  48. Civil Society & Transparency in COP21 Conference Planning

    FR0027, 2015, Environment and Climate

  49. Open Data and Climate/Sustainable Development

    FR0028, 2015, Access to Information

  50. Collaborate with Civil Society on Climate and Sustainable Development

    FR0029, 2015, Environment and Climate

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!