If you took part in our recent Aid Transparency Index methodology review, you will know that one of the key issues we grappled with was how to measure the ‘visibility’ of a donor’s data.

By visibility, we mean the amount of information a donor publishes to IATI compared to their whole portfolio of work.

The greater the proportion on IATI = the more visible the information. 

We want to be able to measure this, because we want as much information on aid and development finance as possible to be provided in a timely, comparable and open format. This happens when data is published to IATI, rather than remaining on closed or internal systems.

Thank you to everyone who took part in the discussions and debates on this issue. In the end, we decided not to implement a measure of visibility at this time, as it would be difficult to apply to all the organisations in the Index consistently. However, we had a lot of useful discussions and feedback from you all, so we are now releasing a paper outlining our approach and the stumbling blocks that we encountered.

Read our paper:
What Proportion of Aid is Actually Transparent? Assessing the visibility of IATI data in the Aid Transparency Index

Two key issues are the variable quality of data that is being published to IATI, and the lack of clarity on exactly what should be published there. We are now turning to you in the community to help answer these questions and hope that this will allow us to implement a consistent measure of visibility in the future.

We hope you have some thoughts on this and would welcome comments via email, or through our thread on the IATI Discuss forum.