Public Watch App
TI-M with funding from the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives developed a smartphone application and a website, the Public Watch App, providing citizens with a comprehensive system for reporting cases of corruption they experience or witness, using new media and cell phone technology. The aim of the Public Watch App is to enhance the quality of democratic governance by enabling citizens to participate in the fight against corruption and at the same time hold their government accountable and thereby contribute to systemic improvements. The Public Watch App is divided into different topics, focusing on areas most vulnerable to corruption, such as services by public officials and civil servants, medical and health services, and environmental abuse.
Citizens accessing the Public Watch App are able to submit concerns and complaints as well as to add their comments and suggestions towards raised concerns. All submitted concerns can be made anonymously, without the need to provide private information. TI-M will transfer the submissions to the respective government institution, which will take appropriate action under consideration of the submitted suggestions and subsequently report back to the Public Watch App. In addition, the project aims to provide the users with educational information related to corruption, such as recently passed or amended legislations and other corruption related news.
In a second phase of the initiative, TI-M will create a sub website under the name UB Watch and a connected mobile application, enabling Ulaanbaatar city residents to participate in city-related decision-making processes and allowing them to report on local problems, such as insufficiently secured construction sites, fly tipping, or street lightning.
Mongolia is a very tech savvy country with the majority of the population using smartphones. Therefore, the Public Watch App as well as the UB Watch App present suitable and efficient instruments to report misconduct and receive valuable information. The applications will also be connected to social media such as Facebook and Twitter, which enjoy high popularity in Mongolia.
TI-M will cluster the concerns into topical areas and forward them to the respective government institution as a collective comment. Through established relationships with relevant government institutions, such as the Ministry of Health and the Independent Agency Against Corruption, TI-M will ensure that the raised concerns are acted upon and are considered during decision-making processes. The tool will also be utilized to raise awareness among governmental organizations regarding corrupt practices and to make sure, quick and efficient actions are taken to abolish them. Further information can be found on the Public Watch website: http://publicwatch.mn/
Parliament Watch App
An informed and active civil society contributes to participatory decision-making and a transparent government, two essential characteristics of an efficient democracy. Engaging the youth in this sense is particularly important for TI-M, as they will shape the country’s political and anti-corruption agenda in the future. Despite this role, the youth generally shows a low level of engagement and is insufficiently educated on topics related to the Parliament and political decision-making. To provide the youth with a suitable and easy to use tool to learn about the parliament and political decision-making and in order to involve them in the latter, TI-M developed a mobile application called the Parliament Watch App. Through this application TI-M provides users with educational information on issues of interest. These range from topics discussed in Parliament, decision taken that particularly affect the youth, as well as corruption related topics. To generate a more interactive learning process, users can take a quiz to test their own knowledge about Mongolian politics and the Mongolian Parliament, receiving feedback and correct answers. In addition to these educational features, users can raise question or add comments, directly addressing them to Parliament Members, enabling a direct exchange between citizens and Parliament officials. Promoting this exchange on a public platform sets an incentive for Parliament Members to engage in discussions and react to citizens’ comments. Furthermore, the openness of the discussions encourages other citizens to add their own comments and questions, enabling continuous communication between decision-makers and their voters.
The Parliament Watch App can be downloaded at two app stores:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/parliamentwatchmn/id1017404130?ls=1&mt=8TI-M acts as the provider of the platform and maintains its educational content. Through a dedicated staff member, TI-M ensures that relevant information and news are constantly added and updated. By linking the application with TI-M’s Public Watch App, website, Facebook page, and Twitter account, TI-M introduces even more possibilities for citizens to gather updates and valuable information in the area of anti-corruption.