This week sees yet another milestone in the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) as the Canadian International Development Agency (Agence canadienne de développement international) is set to become the next major bilateral donor agency to publish their aid data through the IATI standard as part of the Canadian government’s commitment to increasing transparency and accountability in its Aid Effectiveness Agenda. CIDA will be publishing both an activity and an organisation file and this will bring the total number of organisations to publish through IATI to 96.
Canada was a major partner at the 4th High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness at Busan. Their publishing to IATI is not only the first of its kind from North American government, but it is also the first to be done bilingually – including information in French and English or linking to bilingual code lists on the IATI website. In July 2011, as part of the Government of Canada’s Open Government initiative, CIDA launched its Open Data portal. We can look forward to some exciting visualisations by CIDA, including the possibility of geocoded and mapped data.
Furthermore, CIDA recently announced its support for the Open Aid Partnership (OAP) which will increase the capacity to produce and use open data in partner countries, and this followed the announcement that Canada had joined the Open Government Partnership ― a multilateral initiative to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption and harness new technologies to strengthen governance.
We look forward to more open data of this kind to be published in the near future. The US is soon to publish its aid data through IATI, raising the profile of the initiative as the best mechanism to promote transparency in the development funding.