To expand on how technology plays out in enhancing Ghana’s governance systems and processes, Penplusbytes will on Tuesday, January 31 host the first Accra Tech Salon event for the year 2017 and the 12th in the series at the New Media Hub in Osu, Ako-Adjei to discuss the topic: “How can Technology Promote Good Governance?” (Please RSVP now)
Aimed at establishing Ghana’s potential in leveraging ICTs to enhance transparency, accountability and participation, the 2-hour lively platform is expected to bring under one roof, governance experts, media personnel, civil society actors, tech entrepreneurs and enthusiasts with shared interest on the matter.
Globally, there are examples of efforts towards the opening up of governance systems and enhancing accountability such as Huduma, Twaweza,Cuidemos el Voto, CGNet Swara, Fix My Street, Sunlight Foundation, World Bank’s Open Data, the Open Government Partnership and the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI), and a wide range of others.
While Ghana’s democratic credentials are not in doubt, there seem to exist a capacity gap in, particularly, citizens’ abilities to hold duty bearers to account even in the face of exponential growth in the influence of technology.
Penplusbytes’ Executive Director, Kwami Ahiabenu, II, said the Technology Salon will explore exactly how technology can be leveraged to promote good governance in Ghana; drawing on lessons and challenges from other places. “We are witnesses to the extent to which tech tools and new media enhanced participation and the greater conduct of the 2016 general elections. With the heightened interest of citizens and many stakeholders in the business of governance in general, this event will highlight what the possibilities and challenges are,” he said.
Today, new technologies and social media the world over are playing crucial roles in making information more accessible; helping citizens to hold leaders and decision makers to account, and mobilizing them to better participate and have their say.
Among other issues, conversations at the Accra Tech Salon is expected to center on whether technology has any role in connecting Ghanaians to their government and how; which technologies presently offer effective options (or not) in holding government accountable, what new technologies can be adopted or adapted to enhance Ghana’s transparency and governance ratings, and which innovators are developing new solutions to encourage openness and greater citizen participation in Ghana?
Penplusbytes is a not-for-profit organization driving change through innovations in three key areas: using new digital technologies to enable good governance and accountability, new media and innovations, and driving oversight for effective utilisation of mining, oil and gas revenue and resources.