Over the summer months I was enthusiastic to see our long-planned measures aimed at improvement of government transparency come to life through a series of workshops where the public servants had the opportunity to sit down with the representatives of civil society organisations, discuss the issues in transparency of the work of public institutions and develop clear, commonly agreed standards for proactive publication of information.

At the end of the workshop cycle the working group produced a pioneer document – “Policy on Proactive Transparency in Public Administration in Bosnia and Herzegovina”. This document listed 38 types of information to be proactively made available through official websites of the participating government bodies. The information ranges from basic facts about the mandate of each institution, contacts of employees, annual reports, public procurement plans, and audit reports to intermediate and advanced information about the contracts made under public procurement procedures and institution’s expenditures on employee salaries and benefits.

The implementation of these standards by the beneficiary institutions will be monitored by the civil society organisations and the practices and results will be disseminated through the governmental structure for public administration reform.

I am especially proud that this initiative comes from the communications professionals working as public servants in the beneficiary institutions. This shows to me that strategic communications can initiate more, do more and bring more results to public organisations.

Of course, the document and implementation of the standards will not be sufficient for our initiative to grow. Hence, an accompanying public campaign is supported by the Programme for Strengthening of Public Institutions in BiH; an informative video has been jointly produced, leaflets and infographics developed and a conference on the International Right to Know Day, next Monday, i.e. September 28, prepared together with the BiH chapter of Transparency International. I am already looking forward to sharing more about this in the near future.
Policy on Proactive Transparency in Public Administration in Bosnia and Herzegovina can be read in Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian here: http://issuu.com/spibih/stacks/8b2580ac575a4aa2bc6c1edbb60fd684 (English translation yet to come!).

The video link: https://youtu.be/Jh_mkyCp1lc