As of February 20, 2012, anyone can see how Netherlands Development funds are being spent, who receives those funds and when the disbursments have been made. In collaboration with NGO Akvo and commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we have interfaced this IATI compliant dataset by means of a newly built open-source API. A user-friendly search engine can be used by entering keyword and pass various filters to activate the outcome of a search. Google Maps has been integrated to users can quickly spot which countries are receiving funds.
Why open data
Opening up the data from the Netherlands Development funds will enlarge accountability and transparancy. Governments in developings countries are now provided an easy online tool which enables more efficient planning. It also enables citizens to make their governments and participating NGO’s accountable for the funding they receive. And the dutch citizens have a better overview of where part of their taxmoney is being spent.
What is IATI?
The International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) aims to make information about aid spending easier to find, use and compare. Those involved in aid programmes will be better able to track how money is spent and what it is achieving. This stretches from taxpayers in donor countries, to those in developing countries who stand to benefit from aid. Improving transparency also helps governments in developing countries manage aid more effectively. This means that each dollar will go as far as possible towards fighting poverty.
IATI was launched in September 2008 in Accra, Ghana. It is a voluntary initiative bringing together a wide range of parties such as donor countries, developing country governments, non-governmental organisations, and experts in aid information. These participants agree on a common, open, international standard for publishing more, and better, information about aid. This standard was agreed in February 2011 and can be found here.