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Supporting the Sierra Leone Parliament in its commitment to openness and accessibility

2021-03-08T09:02:00+00:00March 8th, 2021|Open Parliament, Parliamentary|

Parliaments are fundamental institutions of democratic governance. Effective parliaments contribute to the rule of law, economic prosperity, and improved social welfare of a country. To support the Parliament of Sierra Leone in its commitment towards providing the best parliamentary services to its citizens, WFD partnered with the legislature of the West African state in developing [...]

Connecting parliaments: Harnessing digital dividends to increase transparency and citizen engagement

2021-03-04T13:05:33+00:00March 4th, 2021|Open Parliament Documents, Parliamentary|

As part of Participation and Openness Week - or POW! - WFD is pleased to launch our new report in partnership with MySociety - 'Connecting Parliaments: Harnessing digital dividends to increase transparency and citizen engagement'. The overarching argument of this paper is that parliamentary digital transformation is a relatively underfunded area of work, but a [...]

Parliaments and peacebuilding: Evidence from research and programming

2021-02-11T10:16:59+00:00February 10th, 2021|Events, Parliamentary|

Parliaments have in general not been front and centre in peace-building theory and literature, and to speak about them in the context of peace-building remains exceptional. And yet the international community has long recognized a causal relationship between strong democratic domestic institutions and peace. The event, organized jointly by UNDP and the Westminster Foundation for [...]

It’s complicated: Parliament’s relationship with anti-corruption agencies in Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Maldives

2021-01-28T17:01:48+00:00January 28th, 2021|Financial oversight, Parliamentary|

Corruption has a negative effect on development, economic growth, and democracy. Independent Anti-Corruption Agencies (ACAs) are often recommended as the tool to curb corruption. However, the creation of such agencies is not a panacea to the scourge of corruption. In some instances, ACAs have been a disappointment and their effectiveness has been questioned. Their efficiency [...]

Legislative leadership in the time of COVID-19

2021-01-19T13:03:39+00:00January 19th, 2021|Democracy and Governance, Parliamentary, Parliaments, Research|

Legislatures are central to modern democratic politics, holding governments to account, and scrutinising legislation in order to generate more effective public policy. Yet during moments of crisis, legislatures are often bypassed as presidents and prime ministers prioritise a rapid response. The concern that legislatures will be marginalised, with greater power concentrated in the hands of [...]

Improving the Sierra Leone Parliament’s access to crucial gender-sensitive data

2021-01-04T17:39:05+00:00January 4th, 2021|Parliamentary, Sub - Saharan Africa|

Dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic requires consolidated efforts from all fronts. As democratic representatives of the people, parliaments have the key responsibility of examining policies and their impact on citizens. This is essential in times of a crisis, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. In July 2020, WFD launched a project focused on supporting the Parliament of Sierra Leone by improving its access to crucial gender-sensitive data during the pandemic.  Gendered statistics are fundamental in understanding how COVID-19 affects different groups in society. For example: are pregnant women able to seek [...]

Parliaments: the missing piece?

2020-12-09T10:26:17+00:00December 9th, 2020|Democracy Matters, Fragile and Conflict Affected States, Parliamentary, Parliaments|

This blog was first published by PSA Parliaments: The UK Political Studies Association Specialist Group on Parliaments. Read the full report by  Professor Nina Caspersen and Dr Gyda Sindre at the University of York.  Since 1992, Westminster Foundation for Democracy has supported democratic systems as they emerge out of conflict and into peace and stability. Currently, we [...]

Supporters, spoilers or sidelined: the role of parliaments in peacebuilding

2020-12-18T11:19:56+00:00November 26th, 2020|Democracy and Governance, Fragile and Conflict Affected States, Parliamentary, Research|

  Parliaments are likely to play a crucial role when states transition from war towards peace. Yet this role is often overlooked and very little research exists on the role of parliaments in peace processes and peacebuilding. Parliaments are an important arena for the inclusion of warring parties, and the resulting interactions could either aid [...]

Young parliamentarians at the heart of advancing youth interests in Nigeria

2020-11-20T11:44:23+00:00November 20th, 2020|Parliamentary, Parliaments, Young People’s Leadership and Engagement|

A healthy democracy needs to include everyone in decision-making processes and structures of governance. However, in many parts of the world young people, women, and persons with disabilities (PWDs) have often been relegated to the side-lines. At WFD, we believe that there are endless possibilities and opportunities that can be realized when all people are [...]

How parliaments can keep an eye on surveillance technology during COVID-19

2020-11-23T11:24:16+00:00November 18th, 2020|Parliamentary|

COVID-19 could affect a shift towards a surveillance culture. Once introduced, privacy-infringing technologies may be difficult to reverse. The next generation of digital technology and artificial intelligence could enable autocratic countries or those with weak democracies to identify and curb opposition. In democratic countries, there is a need for open discussion on how to prevent [...]