‘Accountability, media and the development system: a complicated romance’
This blog by James Deane mentions Publish What You Fund as one of several growing accountability initiatives targeted at donors and other development actors. It discusses the challenges to such initiatives, such as lack of demand for information and the incomprehensible formats information is presented in.
Deane argues that the media have a key role to play in increasing provision of information and data on how public money is being spent, but that potential is not currently being maximised for three reasons. Firstly, the difficulty international media organisations and their supporters face in joining civil society networks. Secondly,“investigative journalism itself is in trouble in most countries”. Finally, journalists are worried that the media risks being “engineered” by the development sector. He stresses whilst increased funding should and will be forthcoming for investigate journalist, it is necessary for journalists themselves to determine “the subject and parameters of what s/he is investigating rather than the source of the funding”.