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Meaningful Metrics for a Smart Society
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About Tr-Ac-Net
The Transparency and Accountability Network
This old material shows something of the concepts that were driving the old Transparency and Accountability Network initiative and to some extent are guiding the True Value Metrics initiative. It was very clear that the Transparecny and Accountability Network had an agenda ... but less clear how this would work out to make a positive impact on quality of life. Experience shows that good accounting is a condition precendent to good performance ... but this is rarely appreciated by operating staff before damage has been done.

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The environment is often challenging ... but poor people operating under adversity can make very good use of modest incremental help.
Small Business
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The informal trading sector ... small enterprises ... represent most of the sustainable economy of Uganda and benefit substantially from increased economic activity in the community.
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This child in Eastern Sudan is severely malnourished. In good times this is a harsh environment, but with conflict the situation is made dramatically worse.
Civil War
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Monrovia, Liberia around 1989. UN troops were too late to stop horrendous killings. The buildings in the background were occupied by the US company, Continental Seafoods in the 1970s. Whatever happened to the idea of NEVER AGAIN?

There are things we can do. Meaningful metrics about performance ... for accountability ... is a start

Introduction to the TVM system

People at the center of everything

The Basic Concepts of TVM ... in book format

About the old Tr-Ac-Net

About Community Accountancy from 2008

About the TAAME initiative from 2006

Tr-Ac-Net and Members from 2007

Some old text from 2000 to 2008 The old CCSD webpage from around 2006
About Tr-Ac-Net
Tr-Ac-Net ... the Transparency and Accountability Network ... is a not for profit collaboration that works to build transparency and accountability throughout society, and use a system of data collection and analysis so that scarce resources are used in the most productive ways.

The Tr-Ac-Net vision is that power of knowledge should help the world use its resources and its technological capacity in ways that are equitable and do not impose on people's rights. There are enough people who want this, and there are the technical capabilities to make it happen. The Tr-Ac-Net vision is for global social and economic progress to be as amazing as the progress in science and technology ... using management information and open-knowledge as part of the process.

The Tr-Ac-Net mission is to facilitate improvement in the performance of relief and development by focus on the effectiveness of the use of funds, the use of resources to achieve community level progress and the use of technology to make management information for relief and development effective and universal

Who make up Tr-Ac-Net
Tr-Ac-Net is a network of professional individuals and organizations committed to success in development, with a a belief that good information can be a driver of change that will improve decision making and operational performance and provide accountability and transparency. The organization has been slowly emerging over a period of several years and in 2005 has been establishing programs to turn ideas into practice. The professional network of Tr-Ac-Net is international with active members in North America, Europe, Africa, South Asia, the Middle East, Central Asia and Latin America

Who funds Tr-Ac-Net?
Tr-Ac-Net has been funded by family and friends. Up to now the network and its professional tools have been developed through voluntary contribution of time and effort. Now the program has grown, new arrangements for financial and volunteer support are being made. A portfolio of activities that have modest costs and give big societal value has been put together and is included in the Tr-Ac-Net database.

Performance in the Relief and Development Sector
There is very little on the record about the performance of the relief and development sector. The reports tell a lot about the failure and the shortage of funds, but rather little is visible about how the money is used and how little is actually achieved with the money.

Transparency, Accounting and Accountability. Monitoring and Evaluation (TAAME)
People know very little about economic fund flows, and where the money is going. There is now a lot of dialog about transparency and accountability (T&A) and it is good that T&A is now on the relief and development agenda. But the underlying changes needed to have better decision making and more relief and development performance have hardly started. Tr-Ac-Net has the goal of making T&A an effective integral part of the relief and development process so that donors and beneficiaries are well served. To do this there also has to be accounting that is strong and professional.

Management and Information
The Tr-Ac-Net premise is that management information is central to good decision making for relief and development and the basis for socio-economic progress. Tr-Ac-Net wants to encourage very good accounting and management information and wants to change the mindset that more information is needed for better decisions. It is more of the right information and less of everything else.

Community Centric Sustainable Development (CCSD)
Tr-Ac-Net puts the community as the central focus of relief and development. Performance is measured in the community, and aggregates development from the community level. Communities in the "south" have a lot of knowledge, but have not made a lot of progress during the past several decades. Tr-Ac-Net has a philosopy and structure that makes CCSD an efficient way to utilize resources for relief and development progress.

Organizational Performance
Tr-Ac-Net recognises some of the transparency and accountability issues are difficult for organizations and provides help in ways that respect the integrity or the organizational entity while also satisfying the need for better sharing of information. Tr-Ac-Net has an approach to Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) that makes it more effective and less costly than traditional M&E. The Tr-Ac-Net approach uses analytical methods to give early warning about performance and active feedback to improve activities.

Resource Flow Transparency
Tr-Ac-Net answers the question of what happens to funds that are disbursed for relief and development in all its forms. To the extent that the answer is that nobody knows, the information can be used to make decisions about allocation of scarce resources.

An Internet accessible database of key information about development is being implemented. It was started in its first phase at the end of 2003. The goal is to put all the information that is needed to understand development performance into an "open access" system. The database content is designed to improve decision making, to help assess development performance and to make independent reliable management information for development easily available. The database is Internet accessible.

Wiki Database
In its first phase the implementation was done using an open access Wiki. The ongoing development of the database is being phased to add functionality as the content matures. The database embraces the concept of open access. Everyone is welcome to use and contribute to the common pool of information.
Information is only of management value when it is reliable. The content of the database is subject to validation by Tr-Ac-Net members.

Dialog about relief and development issues
Sharing information that is already known is better than ignoring existing data and repeating mistakes. International socio-economic development is complex and there are thousands of issues. The database is host to a dialog about issues and ways in which problems can be addressed and solutions implemented.

Community information
Community information is the foundation for metrics about relief and development. There is very little data about community performance that is easily accessible, yet it is community that has the most impact on an individual and a family's quality of life. Certainly the ORDA community has done studies and community development, but the associated metrics have never been established.

In any community, there are a range of activities that go on all the time simply to sustain life and provide food, water, clothes and shelter for the family. In addition there are other activities that can be implemented to improve the quality of life and provide durable benefit for the community. Tr-Ac-Net aims to help bring critical activity metrics into consideration as part of management information about relief and development, and a way of managing relief and development resources.

Organizations have a set of metrics that are defined for reporting to the oversight authorities, and other metrics that are used internally to measure organizational performance. Broadly speaking, there is little measurement of the organizations use of resources and the related impact on relief and development performance. Tr-Ac-Net aims to help link the community level performance, with the activities and the organizations in a comprehensive systemic analysis framework.

Resource Mobilization
Tr-Ac-Net is organized so that there is much more reliable information being compiled so that it is easily accessible about relief and development resource flows and the actual use of the resource.

Development of the information
The development of information about the relief and development sector has been going on for many years. Initially it was a paper based effort, collecting documents that showed something of the data that were available. This leter was improved and a Wiki based system developed to a prototype stage. Various database efforts were also tried. The present initiative draws on these efforts, and at the same time tries to take advantage of the amazing improvements in ICT.

CAVEAT. The information on this website may only be used for socio-economic performance analysis, personal information, education and limited low profit purposes
Copyright © 2005-2014 Tr-Ac-Net Inc. Peter Burgess. All rights reserved.